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English Dialect Society. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 



A GLOSSAEY 



OF WORDS USED IN 



THE COUNTY OF NORTHUMBERLAND 



AND ON 



THE TYNESIDE. 



By R^ OLIVER HESLOP. 



VOLUME L 



Xon^on : 

PUBLISHED FOR TH E ENG LISH DIALECT SpCIETY i Aw'; 
BY KEGAN PAUL, TRENCH, TRUBNER & CO., CHARING CROSS ROAD. 

1892. 



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CONTENTS. 



Introduction : 

Northumberland - 

Adjacent Dialects - 

The Dales and the Shire 

The Speech ... - 

The Northumberland Burr - 

The Glossary 

Notes 



PAGE 

vii. 
xiii. 
xiv. 
xvi. 
xxi. 

XXV. 

xxxi. 



The Glossary, A to F i to 309 



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NORTHUMBERLAND. 



The district represented in this glossary includes the present 
county of Northumberland and that portion of the county of 
Durham lying on the right bank of the river Tyne from Wylam 
to Jarrow. Scotland is frequently regarded as a country lying 
entirely to the north of England. It may be well, therefore, to 
correct this impression by stating that Berwickshire and 
Roxburghshire lie on the western confines, while some of the 
southern counties of Scotland lie, not to the north, but to the 
west of Northumberland. 

This northernmost English county is triangular in form, 
measuring about forty-five miles across the base, by about sixty 
miles from the bottom to the top. Great upland moors connect 
the lofty elevation of the Cheviot Hills with the outliers of the 
Pennine Range, and form the western frontier of the count} ; 
and, from the head of South Tyne, the southern boundary is 
carried on a tract of lofty moorlands, along the high lands of 
Allenheads, Blanchland Moor, and Hedley, and on towards 
Wylam. Except in the valleys, the western and southern 
portions of this district are wild and desolate; and they form 
an effective division on the landward side. The short stretch 
along the river Tweed from Carham to the sea, and the equally 
short stretch of the river Tyne, where it becomes the southern 
bourdary of Northumberland, form the only open frontiers on 
the north and south respectively. Here the great name of the 
kingdom of Northumberland, the home of those Angles who 
were settled on the north side of the river Humber, has survived. 
(Note I.) 

In the tradition preserved by Nennius, the Northern Anglian 
settlements originated soon after the time of the arrival of 



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Vm. INTRODUCTION. 

Hengist in Kent. (Note 2.) It is clear that the Anglian settle- 
ment of Northumbria had so far advanced that in a.d. 547 Ida 
began to reign, "from whom arose the royal race of Northumbria." 
(Note 3.) According to Nennius, he was the first king in 
Bernicia and in Cair Ebrauc (York.) (Note 4.) But the Angles 
north of the Humber and south of the Tees were called by the 
Britons Deur, whilst the same people north of the Tees were 
known as Berneich. The sections of this dual kingdom were, 
however, so near akin as to possess, probably, a common 
language, and also, from time to time, to be subject to the 
government of a common head. (Note 5.) 

The names of two remarkable men are attached to Bernicia, 
those of Saint Cuthbert and of the Venerable Bseda. But very 
little remains of the literature of this period. (Note 6.) That 
much vernacular literature existed seems evident from what one 
of his scholars tells us, that Baeda " was learned in our poetry.*' 
(Note 7.) The Danish invasions during the last years of the 
eighth and throughout the ninth century had an important 
effect upon the English settlements in Deira. The attacks upon 
Bernicia were not less ruthless ; but they were confined chiefly 
to piratical descents on the coasts or to forays carried out on a 
vast scale, the Tyne being made use of for winter quarters and 
as a port to refit. Deira was conquered, divided, and 
permanently settled by the Dane. The Tyne, however, was 
the limit beyond which this complete conquest did not extend. 
Modern Northumberland was left in a great measure in the 
hands of its Anglian inhabitants, who were permitted to live 
under rulers of their own race, in subordination to the Danish 
kings. (Note 8.) A succession of English rulers thus maintained, 
in their capital at Bamburgh, the integrity of Bernicia throughout 
the tenth century, and eventually passed into the line of the 
Earls of Northumberland. 

The old Northumbrian dialect, the language of the northern 
English people from Doncaster to Aberdeen, was, by these 
events, subjected to irfluences which had, as early as the ninth 



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THE DISTRICT. IX. 

and tenth centuries, already begun to afFect its inflectional 
character. This gave a uniformity to the written language 
of northern England. But the variety of these influences 
would, without doubt, at a very early period, begin to affect the 
manner of speech in each district and give permanence to the 
characteristic dialect of each locality. Thus Deira, with its 
colonies of Northmen, may henceforth be said to be separated 
from Bernicia by the powerful solvent of a racial difference in 
the two peoples. 

The evidence of place-names affords important confirmation 
of the extent and nature of the Danish settlements. In the 
part of Bernicia north of the Tyne, the terminations -kam and 
-tan Sire everywhere conspicuous, while the terminal -by does 
not occur. The streams are burns, and nowhere " becks." The 
pronunciation of the is always full, and is never clipped, as in 
the t\ or more Danish dialects. (Note 9.) The contrast in this 
respect with the southern part of the county of Durham 
(Note 10), but more especially with East Yorkshire, is a very 
marked one; for, there, -by and -beck are everywhere prevalent, 
whilst in speech a short f is used for the. 

A further severance was yet to take place on the northern 
border. After the disastrous battle of Carham, in 1018, 
Lothian, hitherto a part of Bernicia, became attached to the 
Scottish kingdom. " From this period the Tweed became the 
recognised limit between the eastern marches of England and 
Scotland." (Note 11.) Following this political change, the 
language of the English people beyond the Tweed eventually 
became, in its further development, that of the Court, of 
education, and of the national literature of Scotland. 

The Norman Conquest appears to have affected Northumber- 
land little or no more than the Danish conquests had done. 
The Conqueror himself was but once within the county north 
of the Tyne, in going to and in returning from his Scottish 
expedition in 1072. (Note 12.) He reserved to himself the 
appointment of the Earls ; but, beyond this, did not interfere 



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X. INTRODUCTION. 

with the internal administration of Northumberland. Of these 
Earls, who purchased their appointment, Gospatric already 
possessed hereditary claim. Waltheof, again, was son of Earl 
Si ward, and heir by his mother's side to the Earldom. On the 
death of Waltheof, Walcher, of Lorraine, the first Bishop 
appointed by William to the see of Durham, was made Earl in 
1075. In 1080, disputes having arisen in the course of his 
administration, during a meeting held at Gateshead the men of 
Northumberland surrounded the church where the Bishop had 
met the popular leaders. To the proverb, " Short rede good 
rede" (short counsel is good counsel), there was added an 
ominous menace. The cry was raised, ** Short rede good rede, 
slay ye the Bishop *' ; and, after many of his officials were killed, 
the Bishop himself was slain. (Note 13.) 

Walcher's murder led to retaliation ; and an expedition in 
force was conducted by Robert, called Curthose, the King's son. 
Its main result was the founding of the New Castle, upon the 
north bank of the Tyne, near the site of what had hitherto been 
the obscure place called Monkchester. Albrius appears to have 
been appointed Earl after Walcher ; but soon withdrew, and 
was succeeded by Robert de Mowbray. During his adminis- 
tration of Northumberland the Domesday survey was compiled. 
But the county of Northumberland finds no place in that 
survey ; for it was a fief without the realm of England. That 
survey was undertaken for financial purposes, and therefore it 
could not be expected to extend to a district in which the Crown 
had no financial interest. The Earldom of Carlisle or Cumber- 
land was in this respect precisely similarly situated, and these 
two Earldoms, with the Bishopric of Durham, included the 
entire territory which is omitted in that survey. (Note 14.) 
The realm of England proper, at that time, terminated at the 
wapentake of Sadberge on the Tees ; which was still counted 
within the territory of the Earl of Northumberland. 

The rebellion and defeat of Robert de Mowbray, in 1095, ^^s 
followed by the annexation of Northumberland to the Crown of 



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THE DISTRICT. XI, 

England, and the appointment of a sherifFin place of the Earl. 
(Note 15.) Within the Earldom, the Palatinate of Durham 
had been a privileged, and was now a rapidly growing, power. 
The choir of its great cathedral church had been built by 
William de Saint Carilef. His successor, Ralph Flambard, 
continued the great work. (Note 16.) In 1121, Flambard built 
the Castle of Norham-upon-Tweed, on the northern frontier of 
Northumberland, and within the episcopal jurisdiction of 
Norhamshire. 

The year 11 39 witnessed the revival of the Northumberland 
Earldom in the person of Henry, son of David, King of Scotland. 
Henry's mother was the daughter of Earl Waltheof and grand- 
daughter of Siward the Earl. But this hereditary claim would 
of itself have been insufficient to obtain so important an 
appointment. Stephen's own reasons of state led him to accept 
the arrangement. In the Earldom thus reconstituted, however, 
exception was made of the Palatinate of Durham. (Note 17.) 
Here, then, we may practically date the separation of Durham 
from Northumberland. Northumberland at this time had, 
on its western bounds, the franchises of Reedsdale, North 
and South Tynedale, and Hexhamshire ; and all these separate 
jurisdictions remained long apart from Northumberland itself. 
The Earldom, in this last return to the Government of its 
hereditary chiefs, was thus enclosed by the Palatinate on the 
south, the episcopal territory of Islandshire and Norhamshire 
on the north, and the franchises above-mentioned on the 
west. 

The accession to the throne of England of Henry II. was 
followed by his seizure of Northumberland in 1157. This act 
provoked the reassertion of their hereditary claim by successive 
Scottish kings ; who, from this time, began the series of invasions 
that so devasted the country. Pudsey, Bishop of Durham, 
obtained the Earldom, in 1190, by purchase from King Richard. 
But, eventually, Northumberland was, in 1242, indissolubly 
confirmed to the Crown of England. 



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Xll. INTRODUCTION. 

The history may well be summarized in the language of the 
able writer of the introduction to the history of the county. 
" Up to the close of the reign of Henry IIL, Northumberland 
still had a sort of nationality of its own, not completely absorbed 
in the sovereignty of England. For a considerable portion of 
the period, indeed, it was in the hands of Scottish princes, nor 
did the kings of Scotland abandon their claim till its very close. 
In the reign of John, and even in that of his successor, it was 
yet doubtful whether Northumberland would ultimately be 
attached to the southern or northern monarchy in Britain." 
(Note 1 8.) From the reign of Henry HI. it was henceforward 
*' as much an integral portion of England as Surrey or Middlesex, 
bound by a common interest, and influenced by the same 
feelings which prevailed throughout the realm." (Note 19.) 

The conditions, which gave individuality to the land from 
Tyne to Tweed, were thus continued down to a period when 
the language had arrived at an advanced stage of development. 
In the examples of northern literature of the latter end of the 
thirteenth and the early part of the fourteenth centuries it appears 
little removed from the local dialect of the present day. So 
much is this the case, that the Cursor Mundi and The Pricke 
of Conscience present few or no difficulties to the Northumbrian 
reader. (Note 20.) 

To the fact, that the autonomy of Northumberland was 
maintained throughout so long and so momentous a period, we 
may further ascribe the preservation of an archaic character in 
its dialect, as a spoken tongue. By outside people, almost 
without exception, this is regarded as singularly barbarous. 
It is, however, barbarous only inasmuch as it sounds strange to 
the hearer. Its real character is seen in the almost passionate 
regard in which it ia held by its people ; and the history, thus 
rapidly reviewed, suggests that our modern Northumberland 
includes within it territory, where, probably, the ** Inglis of the 
Northin lede " has been least affected, in its vocaHzation, by 
outside influences. 



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ADJACENT DIALECTS. XllU 

ADJACENT DIALECTS. 

Included within the limit of the burr, a characteristic of 
Northumberland speech, is the northern portion of the county of 
Durham, within a line, drawn from the river Derwent, near 
Shotley, to the Tyne at Jarrow Slake, and extending southward, 
almost to the valley of the Wear. It is a district where the 
coal deposits, wrought extensively during the early development 
of that industry, attracted the settlement of those colonies of 
pitmen, presently to be referred to. But between this and the 
dialect outside of the line a marked difference is perceptible. 

The folk-speech of Tynemouth and the estuary of the Tyne, 
which resembles that of the Durham coast, is rapidly losing its 
former characteristics. But South Shields yet maintains its 
own dialect sound in a more primitive form. In this portion of 
the county of Durham the line of demarcation between the 
different dialects coincides in a somewhat remarkable manner 
with the prominent features of the Permian formation. But in 
this district the earlier available coal deposits have probably 
more to do with the settlement of a population than have the 
natural features of the country. 

Among neighbouring dialects, that of Lower Weardale 
remains similar to that of Northumberland. Both in this 
feature, as well as in its place-names, it affords a striking 
contrast to the upper part of the same dale beyond Stanhope, 
to Teesdale, and to the district east of Wolsingham. (Note 21.) 
The dialect of North Cumberland has close affinity with that of 
Northumberland ; but, in its vocalization, its light tongue-trill 
and its varied cadence produce a quite different effect upon the 
ear. In the upper valleys of the Allen and the South Tyne, 
beyond the limit of the burr, the eflfect of the Cumbrian 
influence is observable. Here, possibly, the introduction of 
lead miners from adjacent districts has largely influenced the 
speech. 



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XIV. INTRODUCTION. 

Teviotdale, in its dialect, closely resembles, in many respects, 

the neighbouring folk-speech of North Northumberland. (Note 

22.) In fact, the Northumberland and Durham dialects differ 

so little from that of Teviotdale, that Prince Lucien Bonaparte, 

in his Hints on the Classification of the English Dialects^ 

makes them one with it, under a heading of the *' Scotch in 

England,** as distinguished from the true North English of 

Weardale, Westmoreland, and Yorkshire. (Note 23.) In this 

connection, it is interesting to note an extension of the area of 

Northumberland made by the capture of Roxburgh in 1346, 

and its continued occupation by the English until 1460, during 

the long period of a hundred and fourteen years. This period 

was memorable in many ways. It included the time which saw 

the brilliant career of Hotspur. It also embraced that, when 

Earl Douglas, in 1380, led on, against Hotspur, *' full twenty 

hundred Scottish speares,** to the battle of Otterburn or Chevy 

Chase — 

All men of pleasant Teviotdale 
Fast by the river Tweed. 

The period embraced by the English occupancy of Roxburgh 
is otherwise memorable, as carrying us from the time of WyklifFe 
to the time of William Caxton. 



THE DALES AND THE SHIRE. 

Of the franchises of Reedsdale and Tynedale before-mentioned, 
some notice may here be given. ** There is many dales," said 
Gray, in 1649, "the chief are Tinedale and Reedsdale, a 
countrey that William the Conquerour did not subdue, retaining 
to this day the ancient laws and customs (according to the 
county of Kent), whereby the lands of the father is equally 
divided at his death amongst all his sonnes.** (Note 24.) The 
Chief Lord was in possession of all taxes and civil jurisdiction, 
both here and in Hexhamshire ; and the King of England's 
writs did not run within their pale. (Note 25.) It was not 



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THE DALES AND THE SHIRE. XV. 

until the year 1496 that North and South Tynedale, and with 
them Reedsdale (Note 26), were madegildable and parcel of the 
county of Northumberland. (Note 27.) The character of the 
populations of these valleys was attributed, in part at least, to 
the long period of warfare which had existed on the Border : 
" Gud honast men and true sauyng a little shiftyng for their 
living. God and our Leddie help them, silie pure men !" 
(Note 28.) In the Musters of Northumberland, in 1538, the 
light-horsemen of Reedsdale are very numerous ; and are 
described as " able men with horse and harnes and all speres ; 
besides all the foot theues." The muster of the neighbouring 
dale is also bluntly headed, " Northe Tyndell theifFs"; all of 
whom are described as "able with hors and harnes." 
(Note 29.) 

The liberty of Hexhamshire, belonging to the Archbishop of 
York, had become little less notorious when it was made parcel 
of the county of Northumberland, in the 14th Elizabeth, a.d. 
1572. But, even at this late date, the dales and moors of the 
west country were attached to Northumberland in name rather 
than in reality; and their turbulent inhabitants became the 
objects of severe legislative repression. In 1550 (Note 30), Sir 
Robert Bowes, in his report on the state of the Borders, 
recommended the transportation of the superfluous population 
to places too far distant for their relations and countrymen to 
resort to. (Note 31.) That such an exodus shortly afterwards 
took place is evident ; for the Redesdale Beggar, in that century, 
describes how he everywhere met with those ** of our cuntrith 
borne," even in the far south where he then was. (Note 32.) 
A circumstance which specially bears upon this subject is the 
fact that those who now went forth from Tynedale and Redes- 
dale, to seek their fortune on the lower Tyneside, were held in 
aversion ; and were denied admittance to the crafts and fellow- 
ships of the towns. On the 14th November, 1554, the Merchant 
Adventurer's Company of Newcastle passed an Act precluding 
any brother from taking an apprentice of ** such as is or shall 



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XVK INTRODUCTION. 



be borne or brought up in Tyndall, Ryddisdall or anye other 
suche lycke places." (Note 33.) The Act continued in force 
until 1676; when it was modified, "in regard those parts are 
more civilized than formerly." The men of Tynedale were, all 
alike, included under the stigma of their district. *' On Sunday 
last," writes the Deputy-keeper of Tynedale, in 1559, " I appre- 
hended two notable thieves, being gentlemen called Fenwicks, 
and have sent them to the gaol of Newcastle." (Note 34.) 
Year by year, hereafter, ** there is many of them brought in of 
them into the goale of Newcastle, and at the Assizes are 
condemned and hanged." (Note 35.) 

The rapid spread of the use of coal in the time of Queen 
Elizabeth called forth a demand for workers to hew and to 
carry it. (Note 36.) Great numbers of the former light horse- 
men were driven by the stress of circumstances to find in this 
occupation a less precarious, but not less hazardous, employment. 
At a later date, they are described as "Scottish men and 
Borderers that came out of Tynedale and Riddesdale." 
(Note 37.) To these dalesmen we owe the strong clanship of 
the colonies of pitmen and keelmen scattered along Tyneside 
and throughout the colliery districts; where the dialect of 
Northumberland has been preserved with a vigour peculiar to 
these localities. It is in this connection that the mining terms, 
used in the pit districts, retain many words of importance to the 
dialect. They originate in the common speech of the workmen ; 
and are hence included in this vocabulary. 



THE SPEECH. 

Within the area where the guttural r, or Northumberland 
bun, prevails tliere are four districts, each with variations in 
the manner of speech. They are North Northumberland, 
South Northumberland, Tyneside, and Wbst-Tyne, and are 
shown on the sketch map by the letters N., S., T., and W.-T. 



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THE SPEECH. XVU. 

The main characteristics of the dialect generally, and of each of 
its subdivisions, are noticed throughout the glossary in more or 
less detail. Only the more striking points will therefore be 
here referred to. 

Of the consonants, B is not sounded in humble, scramble, 
grumble, tumble, timber, clamber, thimble, &c. Occasionally 
it is used for v, as ribeti for rivet. Ch has both the sound of K 
and of CH in the words kist and chist (chest), kirk or charch 
(church), and kairn or chcrn (churn); both forms being used with 
about equal frequency. But in CkesUty a Roman camp, the 
sound is always soft ; never caster. The tch sound, heard in 
picture, venture, &c., is spoken as tur^ or tor ; thus pic-tur, 
ven-tur, &c. 

D is commonly used alternately for th (^). Thus, fodder or 
fother, haddor or hathor (heather), forder or forther (further), 
smiddy or smithy, shoolder or shoother (shoulder), pooder or 
poother (powder), ladder or lather, &c. It is equally common 
to sound it or to omit it in bin(d), fin(d), gran(d), grun(d), 
han(d), &c. ; and it is usually omitted in Andrew, candle, 
handle, &c. 

G, in the termination ough, yet retains slight traces of the 
guttural gh in such words as rough, enough, and laugh. These 
are sometimes heard as rou*hf ee-nee-uh, and Ue-uh, Plough is 
pleeuf or /»/«/, faugh (fallow) is /a/, through (in through-stone) 
is thrufy burgh (a halo) is hrufy lough (a lake) is lof. Trough, 
sought, bought, brought, are spoken trow^ sowt, howt^ hrowt. 

H is invariably used correctly, and is never omitted when it 
ought to be sounded. In some words the aspirate is given with 
a very strong breathing, as in which, when, where, while, what, 
all of which are sounded with the hw distinctly spoken. The h 
is also used in quick (alive) and quite, pronounced hwick and 
hwite, 

L is sometimes omitted when it follows o. In hold, fold, cold, 
a modification of the vowel takes place; and when the / is 



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XVm. INTRODUCTION. 

dropped these words are heard as had, fad, caad. Or they are 
spoken with the /, as hould^ fould, could. It is also omitted or not, 
at will, in waa{l) (wall), sniaa{l) (small), &c. 

R is heard in the strong guttural form, called the hurv, or hot, 
of which a special notice will be given presently. 

S appears as a worn down form of shall in such expressions 
as ** Aa's be wi* ye syun" (I shall be with you soon). In the 
form " aa*5 '* it stands for am ; " Aa's aal reet " (I am all right). 
S is used for sh in ass (ashes), buss (bush). 

TH, in the, is never shortened to a mere t\ It is spoken 
lightly in hyeth (both), lycth (loth), hrceth (breath, breadth), &c., 
and heavily in the, them, thor (those), &c. Its alternative use 
with d has already been noted 

Of the vowels, the most characteristic are the following. 
The short A, like the sound of a in a la mode, or in the German 
salz (salt). Salt, malt, fault are pronounced thus, except in 
West-Tyne. 

The same sound prolonged produces the Northumberland aa 
(or aw as it is sometimes written) in waa (wall), hlaa (blow), snaa 
(snow), &c., which are thus spoken in South Northumberland and 
on Tyneside. 

The long ai, heard in chair, is heard throughout Northum- 
berland in maister (master), gaird (guard), quairt (quart), &c. 

OW, pronounced as the ow in now, is sounded in howld (bold), 
fowl (roll), cowld (cold), howld (hold), &c. 

The Southern English pronunciation of man (maen) and 
similiar words, is the sound here given to the plural form (m^n) 
and to prent (print), splct (split). 

The short I, as in ftl or sm, is heard in rich (to reach), and /it 
or find (to find). 



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THE SPEECH. 



%\X. 



EE, the sound in fe^l, is heard in breest (breast), and in all 
parts, excepting in North Northumberland, in the words seet 
(sight), leet (light), nect (night). 

O long, as in for, is sounded in forsi (first), porse (purse), Jwrl 
(hurl), &c., except in parts of the north of the county. 

The U, heard in utter, is in every part spoken in rut (root), 
fut (foot), /w«(^) (found), bun(d) (bound), grun{d) (ground). 

OO, as in fool, is the general form in spoot {spout)jprood (proud), 
troot (trout), doot (doubt), &c. 

The words, stone, bone, home, whole, &c., represent a vowel 
to which a remarkable prolongation of the sound is given in 
South Northumberland, where stee-yen is heard for stone. On 
Tyneside and in North Northumberland this is shortened to 
siyen, whilst in West-Tyne the sound is sieen. Moon also is 
heard in ea6h of these districts respectively as mee-yun, niyiin, 
and meehn or meen. 

The following comparative tables will show the range and 
variations of the foregoing sounds in the subdivision of the 
dialect : — 



South Northumberland , 
Tyneside . . 



North Northumberland , 



salt 
salt 
saat) 
sat [ 
salt) 



malt 
malt 

mat 
malt 



fait (fault) 
fait 



(faat] 
\falt \ 



West-Tyne 

S. 
T. 



soat moat foat 



a as m 

German 

salz. 

oa as heard 
in the o 
in solo. 



N. 
W.-T. 

S. 

T. 

N. 
W.-T. 



waa\y[ (wall) 
n«i0[l] 

tt«Ul[]] 



howld (bold) 
bowld 

1 



bold 

bowld 

bowld 



blaa (blow) 

blaa 
{blaa 
\blaw 

bio 

rowl (roll) 

rowl 

rowll] 
rowl 



maa (snow. ^ 

snaa \ 

jsnaa 
[snaw a 0/ as in awe. 

sno as in solo.- 

fcowld and howld and 
\caad {cold) Ao^ (hold) 
j cowld and howld and 



\caad 
\caad \ 
\ cowld] 
coad 



had 
{had \ 
\howld] 

hoad 



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XX 


» 




INTRODUCTION. 








s. 




brusi (breast) 


sgst (sight) 


leet(}ighi) neet {night) 




T. 




breest 


sect 


leet 


neet 






N. 




breest 


sight 


light 


night 






W. 


-T... 


breest 


sect 


leet 


neet 






s. 




forst (first) 


forse (purse) 


horl (hurl) 






T. 




forst 


porse 


horl 








N. 




{furst\ 
forst 


purse 
porse 


ihurl) 
horl 








W. 


-T... 


forst 


porse 


horl 








s. 




siee-yen (stone) 


bee-yen (bone) 


hee-yem 


(home) 


hee-yel (whole) 


T. 




styen 


byen 


hyem 




hyel 




N. 




styen 


byen 


hyem 




hyel 




W. 


-T.".! 


steen 


bun 


heem 




heel 




S. 




mee-yun 


see-yun 


bee-yut 


pee-yul 




fee-yul 






(moon) 


(soon) 


(boot) 


(pool) 




(fool) 


T. 




myun 


syun 


byut 


pyul 




fyul 


N. 




myun 


isyen ) 
\syun\ 


byut 


\pyul\ 




ifyen 

\fyui\ 


W. 


-T... 


meehn 


seehn 


beet 


peel 




feehl 



In the folk-speech a euphonious effect is prodticed by the 
use of particles with varied forms, regulated by the following 
vowel or consonant. Bi (by) is used before a consonant — 
as. ''Bi this an' bi that*' (by this and by that). But 
when a vowel follows, the form becomes biv^ or bin ; thus — 
** Biv all he saa " (by all he saw) ; or, " It wis deun bin a crood 
on them " (it was done by a crowd of them). The prepositions 
in common use have these alternative forms, of which f re, f rev, 
fren (from), *', iv (in), wi\ wiv, win (with) are examples. To, 
is represented by a further form, and can be spoken as tiy Uv, 
til and tin. The usage is also applied to some verbs ; thus, di, 
div (do), he, kev (have), ga, gav (gave), are spoken at discretion 
to suit the euphony of the sentence in which they occur. 

Of verbal forms, the use of aa*s, for I am, is general. The 
termination -ing in the present participle is pronounced in, and 
in South Northumberland ten ; and the -ing, commonly heard in 
king, ring, bring, &c., is nowhere sounded in the participle. The 
termination -in, or -een, is sometimes pronounced as a mere 
modification of n ; like waithn, for waiting ; or it approaches the 
sound of an ; as mahan, for making. (Note 38.) 



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THE BURR. XXI. 

The passive participle in -en is characteristic of many verbs, 
beelden (built), brungen (brought), cassen (cast), drucken (drunk), 
fouten (fought), getten (got), kitten (hit), putten (put), sirucken 
(struck), sitten (sat), tJwuten (thought), are examples of passive 
participles which may be multiplied greatly, as the form is of 
constant occurrence in the folk-speech. 

In weak verbs the preterite usually ends in -eed^ or -eet. Thus, 
hurteet (hurt), waiteet (waited), sorteet (sorted), &c. 

In colloquial talk the personal pronoun is frequently repeated 
in a sentence ; especially if it be a recriminatory one. ** Ye clarty 
young monkey, ye," **Thoo greet lout, thoo," are familiar 
examples of this. 

Another tendency is that of placing the subject of a sentence 
at the end of a phrase. ** He'd getten a sair tumm'le, Jack 
had." ** TheyVe come oot o* skyul, the bairns hez." ** Th'or 
myestly a' that colour, wor coos." 

The use of the third person of the pronoun, when the subject 
of a sentence is a compound one, is a usual form. *^Me an' me 
marrow wis gannin ti wark." ** Bella an' him's faan oot." 

The tendency to assimilate the form of the dialect with the 
current English of the schools is increasing. But the vocaliza- 
tion remains ; and this is observable in the characteristic 
vowel sounds, in the cadence of the speech, and especially in the 
btirVf or bor. 



THE NORTHUMBERLAND BURR. 

The letter y, in England spoken with a glide of the palate, 
and in Scotland trilled sharply on the point of the tongue, is, 
in Northumberland, sounded from the tonsils. This tonsil, or 
uvular r, is commonly known as ** the Northumberland bor " ; 
and it is used, in whatever part of a word the letter may occur, 
as an initial, medial, or final sound. 



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XXU. INTRODUCTION. 

The bor is said to be a slovenly pronunciation of the letter. 
It is also described as an attempt to compromise between the 
smooth English sound and the Scottish trilled r. And, again, 
it is alleged that the Northumberland people elide the r in their 
speech on account of their inability to pronounce it. But the 
burr is difficult to acquire, and few, not born and bred in the 
county, learn to speak it. In actual sound it is an exaggerated, 
rather than a suppressed or elided, r ; and its utterance requires 
vigour to enunciate it with its characteristic force. 

The uvular r in various parts of England is an occasional 
family peculiarity. It is also heard in the speech of a few small 
places on the East Coast of Scotland. Of the village of Charlton, 
in Leicestershire, it is said: **A11 that are born therein have an 
harsh and rattling kind of speech, uttering their words with 
much difficulty and wharling in the throat ; and cannot well 
pronounce the letter R." (Note 39.) In all these instances 
the burz may be said to be sporadic. In Northumberland it is 
general ; and nowhere else in these Islands does it extend over 
a large area as a characteristic of a spoken dialect. 

The uvular r, or r grasseye^ is prevalent in many parts of the 
Continent. " Anyone who will pronounce forcibly the Parisian 
r in Paris^ may produce the Northumberland hutr'' (Note 40.) 
But, to speak it as the Northumberland man does, it is not 
sufficient to produce the sound of the letter itself. Its peculiarity 
and difficulty lie in its modification of the preceding vowel. 

In the words rain, roar, rob, &c., the initial r is so strongly 
uttered as to sound like orr^ or art [arrain, arroar, orrob). The 
medial r, in early, merry, mercy, verse, very, terrier, &c., 
modifies the preceding vowel, so that the er becomes ar, and 
sometimes oy, and the words are spoken arly, marry, marcy, varse, 
varry, farriery &c. So, also, the final er, in mother, brother, sister, 
father, &c., has the same or and ar sound. 

Again, the ir and ur in the following words become or. Bird, 
sir, first, shirt, fir-tree, &c., are sounded bord, sor, forst, short, 



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THE BURR. XXlil. 

for-tree; and purse, turn, burn, curse, hurry, &c., sneporsef torn^ 
bom, corse, horry. These rules are applied to all words in which 
the vowels are sounded as in the examples given. 

The line which encloses the hurr extends along the eastern 
seaboard ; but does not follow the county boundary on its 
landward side. "The Northern limits of the hurr are very 
sharply defined, there being no transitional sound between it 
and the Scotch r. From Carham eastwards, the boundary 
follows the Tweed, which it leaves, however, to include the 
town and liberties of Berwick, which in this, as in other 
respects, now adheres to the Southern in preference to its own 
side of the Tweed. Along the line of the Cheviots, the Scotch 
r has driven the hurr a few miles back, perhaps because many 
of the farmers and shepherds are of Scottish origin," (Note 41.) 
The limit is continued southward by Alwinton, to Birness in 
Reedsdale, thence to the neighbourhood of Falstone in North 
Tynedale. As the Border is approached from any of these 
points the Scotch trill becomes more apparent. From Falstone, 
across the moors, the boundary goes on to the South Tyne, 
which it crosses at a point about two miles west of Bardon 
Mill. It then turns south eastward, passing north of Allendale 
Town and crossing the river Allen. From the latter river the 
line trends eastward, across Hexhamshire, to the moors 
immediately north of Blanchland. Thence it follows the line 
of the river Derwent to the neighbourhood of Shotley Bridge, 
where it passes the river and enters the county of Durham. 
In this district of ironworks and collieries a mixed and 
fluctuating population is met with. Crossing the high land by 
Pontop, the line is continued down into the upper valley of the 
river Team ; passing thence to the south of Birtley it avoids 
the valley of the Wear and strikes north-east till, in a few 
miles, it reaches the Tyne at J arrow Slake. 

There is no evidence of any extension of this boundary line 
having taken place in recent times. On the contrary it appears 



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XXIV. INTRODUCTION. 

to have been driven in on the west and south-west ; and effort 
is made, in the large towns especially, to overcome the tendency 
to burr. 

It is a common supposition that this peculiarity of speech 
has come down from remote times. (Note 42.) But Professor 
Trautmann's investigations show that, as in Anglo-Saxon 
generally, so in Old Northumbrian, the supposition must be 
rejected. (Note 43.) The Old Northumbrian r was spoken 
with the tongue ; and, even in later periods of the Northumbrian 
dialect, the burr, cannot be regarded as existing. Professor 
Trautmann infers that the burr in Northumberland is of com- 
paratively recent origin ; and is confirmed in this view by the 
fact, established by his researches, of the recentness and rapid 
spread of the burr in France and Germany. Originating in 
France no earlier than the middle of the seventeenth century, 
the burr has been traced in its progress, from that time, through 
Germany. It has passed to Denmark, which it now dominates 
absolutely. It has also spread in Belgium, and has reached 
as far as Norway in one direction, and has affected Switzerland 
in the other. (Note 44.) 

The work of Professor Trautmann called forth an important 
communication from Dr. J. A. H. Murray, in which reference is 
made to a tradition formerly current in Northumberland. ** The 
tradition is that the Northumberland burr began as a personal 
defect of the celebrated Hotspur, was imitated by his 
companions, and by the Earldom as a whole." (Note 45.) 
Shakspere's description of Hotspur is highly suggestive. His 
honour 

" Stuck upon him as the sun 

In the grey vault of heaven : and by his light, 

Did all the chivalry of England move 

To do brave acts ; he was indeed the glass 

Wherein the noble youth did dress themselves^ 

He had no legs, that practis'd not his gait : 

And speaking thick, which nature made his blemish, 

Became the accents of the valiant ; 

For those that could speak low, and tardily, 



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THE GLOSSARY. XXV. 

Would turn their own perfection to abuse, 

To seem like him : So that, in speech, in gait, 

In diet, in affections of delight, 

In military rules, humours of blood, 

He was the mark and glass, copy and book, 

That fashioned others." 

King Henry IV., second part, act ii., sc. 3. 

Whether the tradition originated in this description; or 
whether Shakspere gives expression to a tradition current in his 
time, is yet a matter for investigation. The fact of the existence 
of the tradition, altogether apart from Shakspere's reference to 
Hotspur's peculiarity, affords the only light that has, so far, 
been thrown on this obscure subject. 



THE GLOSSARY. 

The word-list which follows was originally begun by noting 
down, on the spot, words and phrases commonly heard in 
the social life of Tyneside, among the hills and dales of 
Northumberland, and in the fields and working-places of the 
district. Thus, in the course of observations extending over 
jnany years, a considerable number of local words in every- 
day use was accumulated. As soon as the collection had 
attained to sufficient dimensions it was roughly arranged and 
classified ; and every available publication in the dialect of 
Northumberland was carefully read, in order to provide 
illustrative examples of the materials in hand and to add 
to the stock. Finally, the list, revised and augmented by 
further research and intercommunication, was collated with 
the Glossary of North-Country Words^ published by John 
Trotter Brockett. 

At this stage of the work the compilation became known to 
Mr. Joseph Cowen, proprietor of the Newcastle Chronicle ; and, 
shortly afterwards, arrangements were made for its publication 
in the weekly edition of that well-known newspaper. On the 
8th October, 1887, the first instalment of the glossary appeared 
in the Newcastle Weekly Chronicle ; and thenceforward it was 
continued uninterruptedly. 



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XXVI. INTRODUCTION. 

The columns of a popular newspaper have usually been 
considered a somewhat ephemeral medium of publicity. In 
this instance the medium proved to be the very best that could 
have been adopted. Through the pages of the Chronicle the list 
was submitted in detail to the scrutiny of innumerable readers, 
intimately acquainted with and naturally jealous of the correct 
rendering of their mother tongue. As the series unfolded itself 
week by week there came from all parts of Northumberland, 
and from Northumberland men resident in* distant shires of 
England and Scotland, corrections and additions of interest and 
value ; while, through the far-reaching circulation of the paper, 
others who had settled abroad, in America, South Africa, 
Australia, and New Zealand, contributed to the enrichment of 
the store. 

In acknowledging the generous aid which he has received 
from all quarters, in his effort to elucidate and exemplify the 
rich and expressive dialect of his native county, the author 
desires to make special mention of those who entrusted to his 
care treasured documents relating to the subject, in which were 
embodied the result of long continued observation and the fruit 
of careful research. 

Among these documents were two MSS. compiled by the 
Rev. John Hodgson, the historian of Northumberland. From 
materials obtained during the progress of his great work, 
Mr. Hodgson had prepared a glossary, evidently intended 
for publication; but with characteristic generosity, finding 
Mr. Brockett engaged upon a similar undertaking, he placed 
the collection at his service. A transcript of the MS. came into 
the possession of Mr. W. H. Willans, of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, 
who kindly offered it for use in the present work, and has since 
presented it to the library of the Society of Antiquaries of 
Newcastle-upon-Tyne. Later in life Mr. Hodgson, reverting 
to his original intention, copied out his word-list, with a few 
variations; but did not live to complete it. This second MS., 
now in possession of the historian's grandson, Mr. John George 



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THE GLOSSARY. XXVll. 

Hodgson, of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, was generously lent by him, 
and, with the transcript before mentioned, is indicated^ in the 
succeeding pages herein, by the words Hodgson MS. 

Another collection, the result of many years observation, was 
supplied by Mr. Middleton H. Dand, of Hauxley, who, for 
more than quarter of a century had noted down the farm words 
and agricultural phraseology of North Northumberland in the 
margin of a copy of Brockett's Glossary, which he kindly placed 
at the disposal of the compiler. Mr. Dand also contributed 
notes and explanation during the progress of the work. 

An annotated copy of Brockett's Glossary, bearing the 
signature of "J. Ord," and containing many marginal notes, 
was also placed at the disposal of the author, from the library 
of Mr. Richard Welford, to whom the writer is indebted for 
many kindnesses, and for practical help and counsel throughout 
the undertaking. Similar service was cheerfully rendered by 
Mr. G. H. Thompson, of Alnwick; who also copied, for 
the writer's use, his extensive and valuable collection of 
Northumberland words ; and who gave assistance, during the 
weekly issues, of the most helpful character. 

To Mr. J. E. Anderson, of Lillswood, Hexhamshire, the 
author is indebted for numerous observations on the peculiarities 
and variations of the dialect, with notes of words, valuable 
from the writer's special knowledge of the county. 

Much valuable material was furnished by Mr. John Avery, 
of Christon Bank. As a naturalist, his observations on local 
names were especially helpful ; whilst his practical knowledge 
of the detail and the technicalities of farming was embodied in 
an unstinted supply of notes sent in as each letter of the 
alphabet was successively reached in publication. 

Colonel J. A. Cowen, of Blaydon Burn, an assiduous observer 
of bird life, had formed a collection of the common names by 
which birds are known in various parts of England. This 



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XXVlll. INTRODUCTION. 

extensive catalogue he carefully annotated for the use of this 
work, distinguishing the names peculiar to Northumberland. 

Mr. Thomas Dunlop prepared lists of bird-names used in 
North Northumberland, and added examples of many colloquial 
and general terms. Mr. R. Y. Green, of Newcastle, revised a 
list of local plant-names, based upon Dr. Johnson's invaluable 
Botany of the Eastern Borders, Many lists of salmon fishing 
general farm terms, and colloquialisms were contributed by 
Mr. R. Cecil Hedley, of Cheviott. 

The use of extracts was generously allowed by Mr. G. C. 
Greenwell, now of Duffield, near Derby, from his important 
Glossary of Terms used in the Coal Trade of Northumberland and 
Durham, This work was issued by him, anonymously, in two 
editions, dated 1849; and, avowedly, in a third edition, 
published in 1888. Where the title is not fully cited, extracts 
from these works are marked Greenwell, 

A Glossary of Terms used in the Coal Trade of Northumberland and 
Durham, based upon the 1849 editions of Mr. Greenwell, was 
published in 1888, by Mr. W. E. Nicholson, librarian to the 
North of England Institute of Mining and Mechanical 
Engineers. This contained additions to the earlier glossary, 
which were kindly allowed to be used in the present work. 
Mr. Nicholson also rendered many services in explaining 
technicalities. 

Professor G. A. Lebour, of the Durham College of Physical 
Science, added notes of many local terms for geological 
phenomena. At the outset of this work, Mr. W. J. Haggerstone, 
of the Newcastle Public Library, arranged, for reference, the 
large collection of local books in that institution. 

Most of all is this work indebted to Mr. W. E. Adams, Editor 
of the Newcastle Weekly Chronicle, for invaluable assistance, and 
for continued interest in and direction of the undertaking 



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THE GLOSSARY. XXIX. 

throughout its serial issue. It is difficult to express the measure of 
indebtedness, where great personal kindness has been added 
to wise counsel, based upon wide experience. 

Obligations for assistance and for contributions are further 
due to the following : — Mr. J. B. Atkinson, H.M. Inspector of 
Mines; Mr. Wm. Aynsley, Ferry Hill; Mr. R. Atkin, 
Corbridge; Mr. James Anderson, Newcastle; Mr. Thomas 
Allan, Newcastle; the Rev. J. R. Boyle, F.S.A.; Mr. William 
Bulman, Victoria, British Columbia ; Mr. Robert Bewick, 
Whalton ; Mr. Robert Blair, F.S.A.,South Shields ; Mr. George 
Burnett, Whangarei, New Zealand ; Mr. M. Walton Brown, 
Mining Institute, Newcastle; Mr. W. S. L. Charlton, The 
Reenes, Bellingham ; Captain Carr- Ellison, Maclousti, South 
Africa; Mr. D. D. Dixon, Rothbury; Mr. T. Embleton, Horn- 
cliflfe Mains, Berwick ; Mr. Matthew Glass, London ; Mr. J. 
Gibson, Custodian, Norman Keep, Newcastle; Mr. T. Gilchrist, 
M.E., Pensher ; Mr. J.P.Gibson, Hexham; Mr. W. Colville 
Gibson, Scotswood ; Mr. J. S. Hounam, Rothbury ; Mr. Sheriton 
Holmes, C.E., Newcastle ; the late Mr, James Horsley, New- 
castle; Mr. J. Harbottle, Gateshead; Mr. J. Humble, Mining 
Engineer, West Pelton ; Mrs. H. A. Jackson, Lowick ; 
Mr. Isaac Jeavons, Winlaton; Mr. Thomas Laws, Napier, 
New Zealand ; Mr. T. Matheson, Morpeth ; Mr. A. L. Miller, 
Berwick ; Dr. Hugh McLean, Corbridge ; Mr. Matthew 
Mackey, Junr., Newcastle; Mr, John Oxberry, Felling; 
Mr. John Rowell, Twizell, Co. Durham ; Mr. W. Simpson, 
Newcastle ; Mr. W. N. Strangeways, Birmingham ; Mr. A. G. 
Schaeffer, Newcastle ; Mr. C. J. Spence, North Shields ; the 
Rev. F. Stephens, Horsley, Otterburn ; the Rev. E. J. Taylor, 
F.S.A., New Shildon; Mr. R, S. TurnbuU, Newcastle; 
Mr. Thomas Taylor, Dunston ; Mr. George Thompson, New- 
castle ; Mr. Cuthbert Thompson, London ; Mr. John Wilson, 
Leazes Park, Newcastle ; and Mr. James Wright, Rjrton. 

In addition to the assistance received from correspondents 
specially acquainted with the local dialect, much outside help 



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XXX. INTRODUCTION. 

was cordially rendered. The Rev. A. Smythe Palmer, of 
Woodford, Essex, readily suggested sources of information, and 
always responded willingly to the many calls made upon him 
for advice and criticism. Throughout the serial issue of the 
work the Rev. Professor W. W. Skeat patiently and courteously 
answered enquiries, and, from time to time, made corrections 
and added valuable notes. To the Rev. Canon Greenwell, 
Durham, the writer has been under many obligations. From 
Dr. J. A. H. Murray, of Oxford, unstinted help was received, 
especially in the investigation of the peculiarity of the 
Northumberland burr. To Mr. John Butterworth, of The 
Market Street Press, Manchester, much is due for the appear- 
ance of the work in its present form. Lastly, the author is 
greatly indebted to Mr. John H. Nodal, the Honorary 
Secretary of the English Dialect Society, not only for direction 
in the preparatory work, but, more especially, for patient 
supervision in the process of recasting the list from the serial 
into its present form. 

While this work was appearing in the pages of the Chronicle^ 
a comprehensive collection of Tyiusidc Songs and Readings was 
published by Messrs. Thomas and George Allan (Newcastle- 
upon-Tyne, 1891). When quoted in these pages, Messrs. 
Allan's book is specially designated. The words Allan's 
Collection refer to a former, undated, work, published under 
the editorship of Mr. Thomas Allan, about the year 1863. 

Readers, anxious for a ready-made etymology in every case 
may be disappointed to find that Dr. Johnson's definition of a 
lexicographer is but partially fulfilled in the writer of these 
pages. For he defines: — ** Lexicographer. A writer of 
dictionaries ; a harmless drudge that busies himself in tracing 
the original, and detailing the signification of words." But, if 
the writer of these Northumberland Words has not ** busied 
himself in tracing the original," he has otherwise done his part 
as ** a harmless drudge." Etymologies are given in very few 
instances ; and, in these, only on authority. For, as has been 



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NOTES. XXXI. 

observed by one who has so vastly added to a knowledge of the 
history of our English words, " If we could but have an 
understanding that etymology is, in general, best left alone or 
very warily handled, and, as far as may be, left to experts, we 
should do much more to advance the study of it. The 
collection of words and facts ought to go first; it is very 
unphilosophical to rush to conclusions before all the attainable 
information is at hand.'* (Note 46.) In the spirit of this 
admonition the collection of words and facts in this volume 
is presented to the reader. 



NOTES. 

1. Baeda, Ecclesiastical History, book ii. c. g. 

2. See Nennius, The History, § 38. 

3. Saxon Chronicles. Earle, 1865, P- 16. 

4. Nennius, The History, § 50. 

5. Ida, the Bernician, Aelle, the Deiran, or their respective successors 

appear as rulers of a united Northumberland, or of one or other of 
its component states. 

6. See Rev. Professor Skeat, Principles of English Etymology, first series, 

p. 41; also Anglo-Saxon Literature, Professor Earle, 1884. PP- ^'o. 
Ill, 169. and not$ ; and Dialects of the Southern Counties of Scotland, 
T. A. H. Murray, 1873, p. 20. 

7. Cuthbert s Letter on Death of Baeda, Symeon, Durham, de Ecc. i. 15. 

8. Hinde, History of Northumberland, pp. 120, 158, &c. For tables of 

Bernician kings and earls, see Hinde. pp. 124 and 158. Also 
LoDgstaffe in Archxologia i^liana, vol. vii., pp. 89 and 196. 

9. Dialects of the Southern Counties of Scotland, J. A. H. Murray, 1873, 

pp. 25, 86, 89, and notes. 

10. For comparison of place-names, see Place-Names of the County of 

Durham, by J. V. Gregory. Archseologia ^liana, vol. x., p. 180. 
See also Weardale Names of Field and Fell, by W. M. Egglestone. 

11. History of Northumberland, Hinde, p. 162. Border History, Ridpath, 

p. 54. An account of the battle is given by Symeon, History of the 
Church of Durham, lib. iii., c. 5. 

12. Saxon Chronicle. Earle, 1865, p. 211 . Details of this expedition are given 

in the Vita Oswini of John de Tynemouth. 

13. Roger de Wendover, Ed. Coxe, vol. ii., p. 18. Symeon, bk. iii., ch. 24. 

p. 213. Saxon Chronicle, Earle, p. 216. 

14. History of Northumberland, Hinde, p. 247. 

15. History of Northumberland, Hinde, p. 203. 

16. Durham Cathedral, Rev. W. Greenwell, second edition, 1886, p. 21. 

17. History of Northumberland, Hinde, p. 215. 

18. History of Northumberland, Hinde, preface, p. vi. 

19. History of Northumberland. Hinde, p. 289. 

20. See Dialects of the Southern Counties of Scotland, J. A. H. Murray, 

p. 24, with examples pp. 31 et sea. Also observations by Rev. Prof. 
W. W. Skeat, Principles of English Etymology, first series, p. 34. 



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XXXll. INTRODUCTION. 

21. Weardale Names of Field and Fell, W. M. Egglestone, p. 12. *' An 

extraordinary infusion of Northumberland blood exists in Weardale. 
The Waltons and Featherstons have for ages been the prevailing 
clans in that once semi-barbarous valley/* — W. H. D. Longstaffe, 
Fragments. Richardson's reprint of Denham*s " Slogans," &c., p. 31. 
Harrison, Gibson, and Watson were also prevalent surnames in 
Lower Weardale. 

22. Dialects of the Southern Counties of Scotland, }. A. H. Murray. 1873, 

p. 86. 

23. Berwickshire Naturalists' Field Club Transactions, 1873, vol. vii., p. 26, 

quoting letter from Dr. J. A. H. Murray. 

24. Gray, "Chorographia," 1649, p. 26. 

25. History of Northumberland, Hodgson, pt. ii., vol. iii.. p. 3 

26. History of Northumberland, Hodgson, pt. ii., vol i., pp. 66, 67. Berwick- 

shire Naturalists' Field Club Transactions, 1863-68, vol. v., p. 427. 
Article. Harbottle Castle, by Geo. Tate. 

27. History of Northumberland, Hodgson, pt. ii., vol. iii., p. 3. 

28. A Dialogue against the Feuer Pestilence, by Wm. Bullein, 1578, E. E. 

Text Society. 1888, p. 6. 

29. Archaeologia ^liana, 4to. series, vol. iv., pp. 169, 181. 

30. As to this date, see Border Holds of Northumberland, by C. J. Bates, 

p. 51, note 185. 

31. History of Northumberland, Hodgson, pt. ii., vol. i., p. 70. 

32. W. Bullein, supra, p. 7. 

33. Vestiges of Old Newcastle, Boyle and Knowles, p. 20. Merchant 

Adventurers, Surtees Society, p. 27. 

34. Sadler, State Papers, vol. i. History of Northumberland, Hodgson, 

pt. ii., vol. i., p. 190, 110/^. 

35. Gray, Chorographia, 1649, p. 26. 

36. History of Coal Mining in Great Britain, W. L. Galloway, 1882, p. 33. 

Gray, in his Chorographia. says, the coal trade " began not past 
four score years since," p. 21. Evidently meaning that it only then, 
that is in 1569 or thereabouts, began to assume large proportions. 

37. History of Newcastle and Gateshead, Richard Welford, vol. iii., pp. 348 

and 392. 

38. See article *' On the present participle in the Northumbrian dialect," 

by Ralph Carr. •• History of Berwickshire Naturalists' Field Club,'* 
vol. iv., p. 356. In this the ethnography of Northumberland 
is also considered. 

39. Fuller's Worthies, pt. ii., p. 126. 

40. Dr. J. A. H. Murray, " Dialects of the Southern Counties of Scotland," 

1873. p. 86. 

41. Ibid. 

42. Saint Cuthbert is described as speaking " the rough Northumbrian 

burr," J. R. Green, Short History of England, 1876, p. 25. 

43. Professor Moritz Trautmann, " Anglia," vol. iii., 1880, p. 212. 

44. Ibid, p. 221. 

45. Ibid, p. 376. 

46. The Rev. Prof. W. W. Skeat, preface Ray's Glossary, E.D.S., p. xxvii. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 



[The letters N., S., T., W.-T., when following a word, refer 
to divisions of Northumberland wherein characteristic 
variations of the dialect are heard ; and a word so marked 
means that the form or sound is proper to the district 
indicated. N. is North Northumberland, the district 
north of the river Coquet, including Redesdale. S. is 
South, or Central, Northumberland, including the part of 
the county south of the river Coquet and lying between 
that line and the eastern portion of the Tyne valley. T. is 
Tyneside, with Newcastle as its centre, including the valley 
of the Tyne and both its banks from Wylam to the sea, 
and a portion of the northern part of the county of Durham. 
W.-T. is West Tyne, the district west of Wylam, having 
Hexham as its centre. When no sign follows a word the 
form may be understood as common to all the districts 
named.] 



A, an Interjection — pronounced like a in niay. ^*A! man!" 
"i4 / man alive !" "i4 / what sport we had !'* 

A is substituted for a«, as ** not a oonce." 

An Adjective ; descriptive of quantity. " Hinny ! what 
a bairns thor is." " What a picturs he hes iv his hoose." 
The meaning is, what a number of bairns — what a number of 
pictures. 

A Preposition ; on. **A this side** = on this side. 

A Verb ; " Aa wad a been there," ** Aa sud a thowt se," &c., 
(a worn-down form of have) ; but * He ' (the e as in pet) is 
a more frequent form. 



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2 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

AA, AW, AH, I — the pronoun of the first person. This long, 
broad sound is a characteristic of the dialect of the Tyneside 
and of South Northumberland. In local works it is generally 
represented by the letters aw. 

AA, A\ AALL [S. and T.], all. "It's aa ower." "Not 
at aa.'* " Are ye aa there?" "Aall 'at aa aad wis eyteen- 
pence " — all that I owed was eighteenpence. Compare OA. 

**Aall the warld an' pairt o' Gyetside," a common proverb, 
used jocularly. It suggests some sly humour at the expense 
of the good people of the Tyneside borough. 

«*Aall togither, like the folks o' Shields." The clanship of 
the seafaring folk at the mouth of the Tyne is proverbial ; 
'hence a little coterie is said to be **Aall togither ^ like the folks o' 
Shields:* 

•' That's fl* aw can tell ye aboot My Lord •Size."— John Shield, died 
1848, My Lord *Size, 

A A, to owe, ** Aa aa nowt." A a is used to denote ownership or 
possession, as in the interrogative phrase, ** Whe's aa this ?" 

AABUT, almost, *• all but." 

" When want has a'but owertyen us, 
She a'ways keeps ma heart abuin." 

Pitman's Pay, ed. 1843, p. 14. 

AAD, AWD, AUD, old ; AADISH, oldish. Ould is another 
form of the word. The West Tyne pronunciation is Oad, 

*' An aud wife cries, • Wor on the Bar.' " 

E. Corvan, died 1865, Warkworth Feast. 

AA'D, I had, I would. **Aa*d a been there mesel" = I would 
have been there myself. 

*'They said aa'd got me claes i' weekly numbers."— J. Weams, Gates- 
head Masher, 

AAD-BAT, in the old form, just in usual good health and 
circumstances. 

*' Aa's just the aad-bat, aa's just the aad-bai, 
Thor's nowt aboot me ye may fear, lad. 
But elways aa's glad, whether good time or bad, 
Just to say, ' aa's aboot the aad-bat.* " 

Song, The Aad-bat, 

AADER, the comparative oi Aad = older. Aadest = oldest. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 3 

AAD-FARRAND, AAD-FARRAN, precocious, or, as it is 
termed, old-fashioned. 

" An aad'fanan little fellow, sitting in the neak, would put in his claim 
for a history beak or ballant if deddy had a penny to spare." — Thomas 
Wilson, note to part first Pitman's Pay, ed. 1843. 

" A uld-farrandy ' favouring ' ; that is, resembling the old or adult ; having 
the manners or sagacity of age.** — New Eng. Diet. 

AAD-FASHINT, precocious, applied to a child ; old-fashioned, 
antique. 

AAD-LANG-SYNE, ** a favourite phrase, by which old persons 
express their recollections of former kindnesses and juvenile 
enjoyments in times long since past." — BrocketL 

AAD MAN, the name for old and unknown pit workings. The 
reference is to diabolic agency. See Aad'un. 

"The more modern workings have often suddenly holed into the old 
mice wastes, . . . which had been already excavated by the industry 
of the 'Old Man,* as such ancient workings are called." — Tom John 
Taylor, Archaology of the Coal Trade, 1852. 

AAD PEG, old milk cheese ; a very tough and thrifty sort of 
food. 

AAD'UN, a familiar name for the devil. " Ye he* the impittence 
o' the aad^uHy' the aad one. 

AAFUL, awful. " She let oflf the aafulesf skrikes." 

AAGUST, August. 

A AH (or Eh-ah ?), What ? interrogative, or, What do you say ? 

AAKERT, perverse, stubborn, awkward. 

AA'LL, I will. Whilst will is here shortened to an / sound only, 
as it is in ordinary conversational English (" 77/ be with you 
just now"), shall in the dialect has shared the same fate, and 
appears as an s only. '*Aas be there thereckly." ** Thor's be 
bonny gam on when aa get there.*' " Ad's hev setisfaction o' 
thoo.** See Aa's 2. 

" Come list ye Sandgate skippers a', 
Aa*ll sing a bonny sang." 

AALLGATES, in every way. "Aa've been up and doon 
aallgatis.'' "Aa've sowt for*d aallgates'' See Gate. 

AAMACKS, of all kinds. " They he' fornitor, an' crockery, an' 
byuts, an' shoes, an' aamachs o* things." 



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4 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

AAMUS, ALMOUS, alms ; pronounced in two syllables. 
O.E. aelmysse. 

"With their dooles and almou we are relieved.'* — RedesdaU Beggar, 1565. 

*'To ew'y hows of almouse ordeynet for bedrydens in Newe Castle; 
i marc."— W^i// of Roger Thornton, 1429. Richard Welford's History of 
Newcastle and Gateshead, vol. i., p. 281. 

AAN, to own, to acknowledge, to possess. "He aan'd to beein 
there hissel.*' It is also the present participle of oa, to owe — 
** What's he aan (owing) ye ?" 

AAN, AWN, own. *« Me aan fireside." " Wor aan hoose." 

" Item, paid to the porters for bringing home the tapsterye from the 
Manor to thar awne howeses that did owe the tapstery, i6d.— Newcastle 
Municipal Accounts, Nov., 1561. 

AANER, OUNER, owner. 

AANSEL, own self, himself. ** Let him ax for*d his aansel.*' 
"ThorUl be nyen but wor aansels there." 

AARIDDY, already. 

AA'S, AW'S (/ is). I. I am. 

" A w*s a clivver chep, aw*s sure, 
Tho' aw de say'd mesel." 

Billy Oliver*s Ramble. 

2. I will, I shall. 

"But aa's gV ye, Will, to understand, 
As lang as aa can wield me hand." 
Aa's gie ye — I will give you; **Aa*s be there thereckly" — I shall be 
there, &c. [S.] 

3. I have. ''Aa's did it."— [S.] ''Aa's deun'd."— [T.] 
AASOME, awful. "The seet on't wis aasofne.'* 
AA^VE, I have. 

AA-WARN, AA-WARND, AA'S-WARN, I warrant, I suppose. 
"Aa-warndy noo, ye think yorsel' clivvor?" "Aa's-wam a 
kyem hesn*t been iv his hair this twee months." 

ABACK, ABACK A, ABACKEN, behind, at the back of— 
sometimes shortened to back, " Howay aback o' the hoose an' 
aa'll show ye." " He com' in at the finish just aback on him." 

*' Aw dream 'd aw was at the North Powl, 
It's a fine place aback o' the meun.** 

R. Emery, Pitman*s Dream^ 

Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 186. 
•* She lost her pocket and all her money, 
Aback o' the bush i' the garden, honey.*' 

Elsie Marley. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 5 

ABACK, backward. "Hadaway aback, aa tell ye." "Ye've 
com' ower far on ; gan aback ti the road end." 

ABACK- A-BEHINT, the very last behind. '' Aback-a-behint 
the set," means the very last waggon, not simply a hinder 
waggon. It means the extreme rear of anything. " Get up 
aback-a-behifit " is get up over the horse's rear. 

ABACK- A-BEYONT, far away behind— out of ken. 

ABAWE, to daunt, astonish, lower, abash. — Brockett, third ed. 

" Probably from old French abaub-ir, abab-ir, to astonish, confound, 
frighten, disconcert."— Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

ABBUT, aye but. ** Ahbut aa'U not let ye." Very commonly 
used for but. 

ABEE (or Let abee), to let alone. 

*• Let's away and he' some yell, and let sic things (d>ee man.*' — The 
Keelman's reasons for attending church, — Allan*s Collection, 1863. 

"Probably from at-be, early Northern infinitive =/o be. — Dr. Murray, 
New Eng. Diet. 

ABEER, to endure, to bear. ** She couldn't abeer to sit aside 
him." "A word of honourable antiquity," says Dr. Murray, 
''w^idely diffused in the dialects; in London reckoned as 
a vulgarism." 

ABEYUN [S.], ABYUN, [T.], above. The word is often 
contracted as hyun, 

*• An' ower abyim this band o' men." — J. Horsley, The Cuddies an' the 
Horses » 1881. 

ABLE, wealthy ; as "an able man:'—Brockeit. (Obs.) 

ABLEEZE, ablaze, on fire. 

ABOON, ABOUN [N.] , above. It is often shortened to beun. 
See Abeyun. 

'• In Chyviat the hills aboun."— CA^t;>' Chase. 

ABOOT, about. 

ABREDE, in breadth, spread out. — Brockett. 

ABY, aside, that is, a-by or a-oneside. "Stan' aby there "is a 
familiar shout in a crowd when a way is to be cleared. 

ACAS, because ; AC AS ON, on account of. " He wadn't gan 
ocas he wis flaid." " He couldn't run ocas on his bad foot." 



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6 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

ACCYDAVY, affidavit. 

ACKER, to curl, as the curl of water from the wind. — Brochett. 

ACKER, a ripple on the surface of the water. — BrocJutt, A 
" catspaw." Compare Caal, 2. 

ACKERSPRIT, ACKERSPEIR, ''verb; used when the 
blade in mault growes out at the opposite end of the root." — 
Ray*s Collection of North-Country Words, E.D.S. A variant of 

ACROSPIRB. 

ACKNOW, to acknowledge, to contess.'^Brockett. 

ACLITE, out of joint, awry. See Cleyt, Clite. 

'* Newcastle's now a dowly place, all things seems sore acliU, . 
For here at last Blind Willie lies, an honest, harmless wight.** 

R. Gilchrist, died 1844, ^^*^^ Willie's Epitaph, 

ACOW, ACAW, crooked, oblique, awry. — Brochett. 

ACRE-DALE LANDS, or ACRE-DEAL LANDS, land 
apportioned in acre strips. Deal is a portion. To deal is to 
give to each his lot. Hence Acre-deal Lands were lands so 
dealt out or apportioned, each deal or lot being an acre strip. 

"The fields round a Saxon village were open fields, and generally 
divided into acre strips, in the tenth century, just as the vision of Piers 
Plowman was quoted in proof that it was so in the fourteenth century. — 
F. Seebohm, English Village Community^ third edition, 1884, p. 106. 

ACRON, an acorn. 

ADAM AND EVE, the tubers of Orchis latiforia ; the tuber 
which sinks being Adam and that which swims being Eve. 
Cain and Abel is another name for these tubers, Cain beiflg 
the heavy one. — ^Johnston, Botany of Eastern Borders, p. 193. 

ADAM'S NEEDLE. See Edom. 

ADDER-GRASS, the spotted orchis. Orchis maculata ; called 
also Hens, Hen's-kames, and Deed-man's Hand. 

ADDER-STYEN, a stone with a hole through it. These were 
picked up and hung behind the door as a charm. Mr. M. 
H. Dand says : ** Within my recollection no fishing-boat was 
without one of these stones suspended from the inwiver. Now 
entirely disused." See Holey-stone. 

"And vain Lord Soulis's sword was seen, 
Though the hilt was adderstone.*' 

The Cout of Keeldar. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 7 

ADDIWISSEN, had I wissen ; that is, *'Had I but known!" 

" A phrase nearly obsolete, but still retained by some old persons.— 
Brockett. 

ADDLE, AIDLE, EDDLE, to earn. 

"He nfUUes three ha'pence a week, 
That's nobbut a fardin' a day." 

Song, Ma Laddie. 

"Not from the A.S. "word edkan, a reward, recompense, &c. ; but from 
Icelandic ddlask, to earn." — Prof. Skeat, Note to Ray, Collection of North- 
Country Words, E.D.S. 

" Now exclusively dialectical — used everywhere from Leicestershire to 
Northumberland; not in Scotland." — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

ADDLINS, earnings. " He's had good addlins this quarter." 

ADGE, an adze. 

ADIT, a horizontal gallery for draining a mine. See Water- 
gate. 

ADNA, the sound of aa de na,I do not. ^^Adna want ye." 

AD SMASH I A profane exclamation. See Exclamations. 

AD VENTER, adventure. 

" The early English auentu*re soon passed in popular speech through 
the forms au entur, aun tur, to auntur and anter (still common in Scotland), 
while aventu re remained a literary form. In fifteenth to sixteenth 
centuries the French was often re-spelt adventure in imitation of Latin, a 
fashion which (though it soon died out in France) passed into England 
and permanently aflfected the word." — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet, 

AE [N.] , one. 

"Tweed says to Till, 

• What gars ye rin sae ill ?' — 

* Sae still as I rin, and sae fast as ye gae. 
Where ye drown ae man, I drown twae.' " 

AFEARD, afraid. "Aa was afiard ye warn't comin'.'* See 
Feard. 

••His hore beard 
Was fowly dight, and he of death afear'd.'* 

Spenser, Faerie Queene, bk. iii., cant, x., st. 52. 

AFER [N.], a horse.— HalliwelPs Diet. This is the same as 
Aver, which see. 

AFIRE^ on fire. 

*• Ma keel's aa afire, ma for tin's aa spoiled." — E. Corvan, died 1865, 
Keel Afire, 



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8 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

AFOOR [N.] , AFORE [T.] , before. "Gan on aforer 

" Afor$ yor fit to fight yor way." — ^Thomas Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 
1843 ed.. p. 45. 

AFOOR LANG, shortly, in a short time. 

AFORCE, a term in colliery working; "to hole a board into 
an adjoining board unintentionally.** — GreenwelL 

AFOREHAND, beforehand. This is sometimes worn down 
and sounded as aforan. See next word. 

AFORRAN, AFORN, on hand, ready for use. " Nowt aforran,'' 
nothing ready. 

AFTER-DAMP, the noxious gas resulting from a colliery 
explosion. 

" This after 'dam f is called choak-damp and surfeit by the colliers, and is 
the carbonic acid gas of chy mists." — A Description of Felling Colliery 
previous to May 23, 181 2, by Rev. John Hodgson. 

" The sense of vapour, steam, smoke expressed by the German dampf, 
Dutch damp, demp, aomf, may have arisen in two ways. The German 
dambf signifies short wmd, dampfig, breathing with dimculty, and as the 
designation of the phenomenon is commonly taken from the most 
exaggerated manifestation of it, the term may have been applied in the 
first instance to the breath, and thence to exhalation, steam, smoke. Or 
the designation may have been taken from regarding smoke, dust, vapour, 
steam as suffocating, stifling, choking agents. The German dampf is 
explained by Adelung, ' Any thick smoke, mist, or vapour, especially 
when it is of sulphureous nature,* where the reference to the idea of 
suffocation is obvious. In the choke-damp of our mines there is a 
repetition of the element signifying suffocation, added to supply the loss 
of that meaning in the English damp.** — Wedgwood, Dictionary of English 
Etymology, 1872. 

AG, to hack, or cut with a stroke. — Brockett, 

AGATE, AGYET, afoot, astir, on the way, out and about. 
** Aa*s pleased to see ye agate agyen.'* 

**-Gate in the Northern dialect signifies a way; so that agate is at or 
upon the way." — Ray's Collection, 169 1. 

AGE, to advance in years, to appear old. ** He ages fast." 

AGEE, atwist. The g is sounded soft. See Aglee. 

'* Hae ye seen my Jocker, comin' up the quay, 
Wiv his short bluejacket, and his hat agee?" 

R. Nunn, died 1833, Jocker. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 9 

A-GE-YEN [S.],AGYEN [T.] , again, against. 

" Forty thousand Skottes and fowre 
That day fought them agaync.*' 

Battle of OtUrhum, 

" The keel went bump agycn Jarrow, 
An' three o' the bullies lap oot." 

LittU Pee Dee. 

A-GE-YEN [S.] , AG YEN [T.] , on or before. " Aall be there 
agyen ye come.** 

"To be Let immediately or against May-day next." — Advertisement^ 
February 4, 1742. 

AG-E-YEND, A-GYEND, against it. 

" He stuck agyend."--Thom3^ Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. ii., v. 38. 

AGG, a grudge, a spite. — HaUiwelVs Did. 

AGLEE, awry. "A gleed eye is a crooked eye.*' See Ajye, 
Agee. 

*' Awd Jack was dozin in his chair, 
His stockin's lyin' ower his knee, 
His wig hung up wi' greatest care, 
His neet-cap thrawn on a' aglee.'* 

Thomas Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. iii., v. 26. 
AGRUN, aground. 

AGYE, aside, askew. See Ajye. 

AHAD, hold. " Stop till aa get ahad on*t.** ** If aa get ahad 
on ye, aa*ll warm ye.*' 

AHINT, behind. "Come in akinf' — the familiar cry of the 
drover to his dog. **Ahint yor hand," to have someone to 
look after your interest in your absence. 

"He set me down ahint ma door." — Thomas Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 
1826, part ii., v. 39. 

"There was a man foUowin' ahint to pick up the fish that were 
killed." — '*Old Salmon Poacher," S. Oliver's Rambles in Northumberland, 
1835. P- 156. 

AI, yes. "Ay, yes. Pronounced », as, indeed, it is spelt in 
most old books.'* — Halliwdrs Diet. 

AIBLINS, perhaps. Not very common, but used by old people. 
In a case lately tried before Mr. Justice Manisty in Newcastle, 
a Northumberland man in his evidence said, ** Wey, aa aihlifis 
hed twee, or aiblins hed three glasses o' whisky." The judge 
had to translate this to the bar. See Yeblins. 



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lO NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

AIDLE, to earn, to manage. See Addle 

AIGHT, eight (pronounced €y$ t). Aighth, eighth. 

AIK [N.J, oak. See Yek. 

AILSEY, Alice ; also Elsie. 

AIR-BOXES, tubes of wood used for ventilation in a pit where 
there is only one passage or opening. — Mitt. Gloss. , Newcastle 
TermSi 1852. 

AIRC, ARK, a large chest. A meal-ark is still the name given 
to a meal-chest in country places. 

**Arks were made of oak, and contained the family dresses, &c. The 
front was often ornamented with carved borders and joined with wooden 
pins." — Hodgson MS. 

AIRCH, an arch. 

AIR-CROSSING, an arch built over a horseway or other road, 
with a passage or air-way above it. — Min. Gloss., Newcastle 
Terms, 1852. 

AIRE, AIRFISH [N. and S.] , ARE [T.] , apprehensive. A 
condition of mind in which it is necessary to proceed with 
great caution. ** Yen's rether airjish aboot eet." See Arf, 
AiRTH, which with airf are forms of the word argh. 

AIRM, an arm. Sounded as two syllables in S. Northumber- 
land. 

" An* send amang the gang, Mr. Mayor, Mr. Mayor, 
Airm — What d'ye ca' him ? — Strang, Mr. Mayor." 

Quayside Ditty, 1816. 
" And he haves on thorn his arum, 
Therof is ful mikel harum." 

Havelok, quoted by Halliwell. 

AIRSBIT, Archbold. A frequent surname. 

AIRT, to find out, to discover. " Til airt it oot." 

AIRT (pronounced d-art), art or part of the compass, direction. 

" What airt's the wind in thi day ?" People commonly say, 

when starting on a journey, that they go east, west, north, or 

south, as the case may be. "What airt ar* ye gan thi day ?" 

" Off they rade— 

They rade the airt o' Liddesdale." 

Death of Parcy Reed. 
" A stranger — who cannot very well comprehend the country people 
when directing him what airts to observe — will be very liable to lose his 
road." — S. Oliver, jun., Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. 9. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. II 

AIRTH, fearful, afraid. ** He was airth to do it/' that is, afraid. 
"An airtkful night," that is, a frightful night. — Hodgson MS. 
See Arf, Airf. 

AIRTHFUL, fearful. See above. 

AIRWAY, a passage along which the current of air travels in 
a colliery. 

AITH, an oath. 

AITS [N.] , oats. See Yetts. 

AIX, an axe. 

*' Cut oflf wiv a choppin aix. — Geordys Last^ 1878, p. 4. 

AIXEL, AIXEL-TREE, or AIX-TREE, an axle. 

AJYE, AJEE, on one side, atwist ; same as Agee, Aglee. 

AKWERT, AAKERT, awkward. ** An aakert thing for the 
coo ! " In North Northumberland, aukert, 

ALANG, along. 

•• Fre there aa went a/fl«^the brig." — Ma Canny Hinny. 

ALANTOM. ALANTUM, at a distance, a long time.— Brockett. 
In Ray's Collection it appears as Alantom^ adv.^ at a distance. 
Kennett, MS. Lansd., 1033, gives the examples, "I saw him 
at alungtttn" and ** I saw him alantum off.*' — Halliweirs Diet. 
(Obs.) 

" Some of our lads b'ing very kind, Alantom followed me behind." — 
G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 72. 

*• ? Corruption of French a lointain—Sit a distance.*' — Dr. Murray, New 
Eng. Diet. 

ALDE-HE-WAY, the ancient road which continued the Carel 
Street, or Karlegate, eastward from Howford, by Acomb 
and Anick, to Corbridge, thence to Newcastle and 
Tinmouth. — Hodgson, Northumberland^ iii. 2, p. 411. 

ALEAN [N. and S.], ALYEN [T.] , alone. " Let's alyen^ 
let me alone. " Thor wis three on them, let alyen his fethor " ; 
here it means let alone, or besides. 

ALGATES, always ; all manner of ways ; however ; at all 
events. A compound of all and gates, or ways. — Anglo-Saxon, 
Halliweirs Diet. 



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12 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

ALLER, the alder, Alnus glutinosa. See Eller and Oller. 

•• There growyth many alien and other ramell wood, which servethe 
muche for the bujrldinge of suche small houses as be used and inhabyted 
by husbandmen m those partes."— 5«rt;o' of Cheviot, 1542 Cott, MSS. — 
Hodgson, Northumberland^ part iii., vol. 2. 

'• Paide for 3 alter spars, i6d,"— Newcastle Municipal Accounts, Nov. 1595. 

" The historical form aller survived till the eighteenth century in litera- 
ture, and is still general in the dialects." — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

ALLERS, clog soles. ** He has on a pair o' ntwallers,*' Clog 
soles were made of alder wood. 

ALLER-TROOT, ALDER-TROOT ; the small brandling 
trout or **skegger,'* called from their habit of haunting the 
roots of alder trees that grow by the side of the stream. — 
S. Oliver, Fly-Fishings 1834, p. 17. 

ALLEY, a boy*s marble made of alabaster or of any fine white 
stone. 

ALLEYBLASTER, ALABLASTER, alabaster. 

ALL-IN-THE-W^LL, a juvenile game in Newcastle and the 
neighbourhood. A circle is made about eight inches in 
diameter, termed the well, in the centre of which is placed a 
wooden peg, four inches long, with a button balanced on the 
top. Those desirous of playing give buttons, marbles, or 
anything else, according to agreement, for the privilege of 
throwing a short stick, with which they are furnished, at the 
peg. Should the button fly out of the ring, the player is 
entitled to double the stipulated value of what he gives for the 
stick. The game is also practised at the Newcastle Races, 
and other places of amusement in the North, with three pegs, 
which are put into three circular holes, made in the ground, 
about two feet apart, and forming a triangle. In this case 
each hole contains a peg, about nine inches long, upon which 
are deposited either a small knife or some copper. The 
person playing gives so much for each stick, and gets all the 
articles that are thrown off so as to fall on the outside of the 
holes. — Halliweirs Diet. 

ALMERY, a cupboard. See Ambry. 

ALMOUS, alms. See Aamus. 

ALN ; the pronunciation of this word is notable. It is sounded 
as Ale river, Yel waater, An-nick (Alnwick) town, and at its 
mouth is the village of Yel-mooth (Alnmouth). 

'* The Lord Evers claymed from the confynes of Berwick, south-east- 
ward to the water of Aylle" — Sir Robert Bowes's Report to the Marquis of 
Dorset, 1551. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 1 3 

ALOW, ablaze, alight. The ow is sounded like ou in trout. 
"It wis aall iv alow iv a minute." See Lowe. 

ALOWSE, loose, free. " Let yorsel alowse,** was the exhorta- 
tion of a pitman to a friend who was batting stiffly at a 
cricket match. 

ALSWA [S.] , also ; in Old English this is alsua; alswa. So in 
the dialect has retained this sound of swa^ soo-a. 

AMACKALLY, in a manner, as well as one can. — Hodgson MS. 
(Obs.) 

AMAIN, to run without check. When a set of waggons run 
down an incline without break, or without being attached to 
the rope, or through the accidental detaching or breaking of 
the rope, they are said to ** run amain" 
*' As if ma wits had run amain." 

Thos. Wilson, The PitmatCs Pay, 1826, p. ii. v. 12. 
" Couch'd his speare, and ran at him amaine.** 

Spenser, Faerie Qu$ene, bk. vi., cant, i., 33. 

AMANG, AMANGST, among, amongst ; often shortened to 
mang, mangst. 

" That at the last thai ordeind tuelve, 
The thoughtfulest amaug thamselve." 

Cursor Mundi, a.d. 1320. 
" Amang the rest aw cowped ma creels." 

T. Thompson, d. 1814, Jimmy Jonesoti's Wherry, 

AMANY, a great many. ** Thor's amany at dissent knaa where 
te torn for thor next meal." 

AMBRY (pronounced aumry), **a pantry, or cupboard to set 
victuals in. Proverb — *No sooner up, but the head in the 
aumbry^ and nose in the cup.' I suppose we might have it of 
the Normans." — Ray's Collection of North-Country Words, 1691. 
Mr. Brockett quotes the proverb above as if familiar in New- 
castle. Sometimes spelt aumery or aumry. 

" Some slovens from sleeping no sooner be up, 
But hand is in aumbrie, and nose in the cup." 

Tusser's Five Hundred Points, 1573, ii., 5. 
*' Against the north and south walls there were almeries, richly decorated, 
containing a large number of precious relics.*' — Rev. Prov. Consitt, Life 
of St. Cuthbwt, p. 205. 

AMEAST (pronounced a-me-ast), almost. It is also abbreviated 
to meast^ myest, the former the S. Northumberland form, the 
latter Tyneside. 

'* This wine's amaist got in my head.*'— Jofo-Smotis Discourse, p. 20. 



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14 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

AMELL, among, betwixt. Some pronounce it ameld. — Ray's 
Collection, 1691. Compare Mell, 2. 

" Amell them twa to drive a bargain." — JocO'Serious Discourse^ p. 29. 

""Beivfeen^ Northumberland. It seems to be Islandic & milli. It is 
stated not to be used in Scotland." — HalliwelVs Diet. 

AN, if. ^*An yer gannin the mom, will ye tyek us wi' ye ?" 

" To the new castell when they cam, 
The Skottes they cryde on hyght, 
Sir Harye Perssye, and thow byste within, 
Com to the fyide and fyght. 

Battle of Otterbum. 

AN AA, AN AAL, also, too, likewise. See In Aa. 

** The folks was gaun in, so aw bools in an a\" 

J. P. Robson, died 1870, A Cut at Wor Toon, 1849. 

•* They brought up the Fee-dee just like a duck'd craw, 
And the skipper wi' laughin' fell smack ower an* a'." 

*' Half'Droon'd Skipper." — Marshall's Songs, 1825, p. 196. 

" This ean night, this ean night, 
Every night and awle. 
Fire and fleet and candle light, 
And Christ receive thy sawle." 

Old northern song over a dead corpse. 
MS. Lansdown, 1033, under word Flett, quot. Halliwell. 

ANANTER, peradventure, in case, in the event that. From 
a«, on, or in, and aunter, aventure, adventure, chance. That 
is, "if peradventure.*' " Ananters aa get well home," means 
" In case I get well home." See Adventer. 

ANCE, ANES, once. Yence is more commonly used, however. 
^^ He went ance ecrand^** means he went a special journey. 

ANCHOR, ANKER, the bend of a scythe, or of an adze, or 
other workman's tool. Some men prefer the angle at which 
a scythe blade is set from the handle to be more or less acute. 
Hence the direction in fixing a new handle is : <* Give *or a 
bit mair ankot,'* or " A bit less ankot^** as the case may be. 
The same direction is given in fixing a new handle to an adze. 
The word come^ or cum^ has precisely the same meaning. 

ANCHORAGE, the abode of an anchoret or hermit. The 
Anchorage School at Gateshead Church. 

" Z3jo, Nov. 14. License granted to John Wawayn, rector of Brance- 
peth, for building a cell in the churchyard of St. Mary's, Gateshead, for 
an anchoress, provided a convenient place can be found for her, and the 
rector of the church gives his consent. The name is preserved to this 
day in the Anchorage School attached to Gateshead Church." — Richard 
Welford, History 0/ Newcastle and Gateshead, vol. i., p. 107. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I5 

ANDIRONS, irons on the hearth to support burning wood. 
Old French, andier. 

ANE [N],one. 

AN EAR, near. " Dinna gan anear the watter." " The kettle's 
boilin* ; dinna gan anear' d,*' 

ANEATH, beneath, underneath. "Where's the maister? — 
He's aneath the steeth." 

ANENST, ANENT, over against. Often spoken as nemt. 

"Thar was sartaye shipes taken from anens Hartilpowll, taken by 
Franchemen." — Newcastle Municipal Accounts, Aug., 1563. 

ANES, once, at any one time. See Ance. 

•* I ne'er yet saw the Tyne se big 
Nor running anes se like a sea.** 

Jfoch 0' the Side, 

ANG, the hairy part of an ear of barley — probably a corruption 
of awn, — HalliwelVs Diet, 

ANGER-NAIL, a piece of skin at the side of the nail which 
has become semi-detached and gives pain. The word is 
always sounded ang-cr not an-ger, 

ANGER-BERRY, ANGLE-BERRY, a warty excrescence 
growing on the umbilicus, or scrotum, or teats of an animal. 
These are highly vascular and easily hurt. 

*' Among old people in Northumberland, as at Whelpington, anglehetry 
is the name of a vetch ; probably because it angles or catches hold and 
clings to plants or shrubs stronger and taller than itself." — Hodgson MS. 

ANGORT (pronounced ang-ort), angered. 

" Me muthor's bairns gat angort at us." — J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Sang 
0' Solomon, Newcastle version, ch. i., v. 6. 

ANGRY (ang-ry)f inflamed or painful, as a suppurating sore. 
" Me fingr's beeldin' aa's flaid — it leuks se angry,** 

ANKISH, anxious. 

ANKLET, ancle. 

" Wi' anklets shaw'd, an' scathered feet." — ^T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 
1843, pt. ii., V. 16. 

" Sometimes a gaiter.** — Halliwell^s Did. 

ANNET, the common gull, so called in Northumberland. — 
HalliwM^s Diet. 



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l6 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

ANUNDER, ANUNER, under. "Mind yor eye, will ye? 
Aa*s gan anuner.** 

••Aw sets me ways doon anunder his shada.* — J. P. Robson, d. 1870, 
Sang 0* Solomon, Northumberland version, ch. ii., v. 6. 

** There's plenty of coal dug from the deep mine, that gans through 
anunder wor river. — W. Mitford, "Tyng Heroes,'* Bards of the Tyne^ 1849, 
p. 540. 

A-ONE, an individual, one person. — HalliwelPs Diet. ** Thor's 
not a-one on ye dar come." 

APORPOSE, on purpose. " He's deund aporposs to myek hissel 
leuk clivvor." 

APPETIZE, to provoke an appetite for iood.—Halliweirs Diet. 

APPLE-CAIRT. "That's upset his apple-eairt for him, aa 
think " — that has completely stopped his project. 

APPLE DUMPLINS, the great hairy willow herb, Epilohium 
hirsutum. Called also Carran dumplin. 

APPLE SHEELY, the chaffinch. Fringilla eaelehs. Commonly 
called Sheely. 

APRIL, APERHIL, and APRILE. '' AperhU borrows three 
days of March, and they are ill." See Borrowed Days. 

APRIL-GOWK, an April fool. The cuckoo has become 
synonymous with jest and joke ; gowk is cuckoo. Boy : "Hi, 
canny man, see what ye've dropt." The canny man turns 
round to see, and is hailed with a yell, ** O, ye April-^^^^ie'A / " 
as the boy runs off. 

ARAN-WEB, is a cobweb in Northumberland. — HalliwelVs 
Diet. 

ARDERS, fallowings or ploughings of ground. Ray's Collection^ 
1651, preface. This word is included by Brockett in his 
glossary, and there defined as " Order, by course. In 
husbandry, the arders are the divisions of tillage land set 
apart for regular courses of crops in successive years ; 
or for courses of cropping in rotation." See Ather. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I7 

ARF, ARFISH, ARTH, unwilling, sorry, pitiful. Brockett, 
under the first and second form, defines it as " timid, fearful, 
apprehensive, afraid — as * I am rather arfish about that.* " 
The word is used, however, to mean a condition in which it 
is necessary to proceed with great caution. It is a dialect 
form of the word argh. In HalliweWs Dict,^ awvish is evidently 
the same word, and there defined as '' Queer ; neither sick 
nor well. .Query, elfish ? " See Airth, Airf. 

ARGY, to argue. 

ARK, a large chest to put com or fruit in, like the bing of a 
buttery. But the modern signification is a coffin. — Ray's 
Collection^ 1691. Meal-ark, an oatmeal chest. See Airc. 

A RLE, YEARL, to bind by payment of money — or arles — that 
is, earnest-money. **What did the missus arle ye wi'?" 
**She ga' me two shillin*." The arlin is sometimes called 
" the bond-money." 

"In hiring servants, any bargain made between master and servant 
was accounted void, before entry into servitude, if arles bad not been 
offered and accepted." — Hodgson MS. 

" Paid to Wm. Sever, for his arkSt for quartering the priest, I2d." — 
Newcastle Municipal Accounts^ 1393. 

The arles here are the executioner's hire for quartering the 
body of an executed priest. Arle means, also, any kind of 
engaging — as, for instance, 

" She arled him there for her groom, bridegroom, 
She arlid him there for her groom." 

Song, Broom, Green Broom. 

ARL, earl ; also YEARL, or JARL. " Th' arl & Dorham," 
" Yarl Parcy," &c. 

ARLUME, an heirloom. — Halliwell, Arelumes. 

ARLY, early. ** Arly bord, sor ?" — Newspaper stfieei cry in New- 
castle. A special edition with the article written under the 
nom-de-piume of " Early Bird.** 

ARN, the pronunciation of earn. 

ARND, ARRAND, an errand. ** He's gaan an arnd:' In 
S. Northumberland, eerand. 

ARNEST, earnest. " He's iv arnest." Also earnest-money, 
hansel. 



B 



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l8 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

ARNUT, the earth-nut— ari-iitt/. The edible root of Bunium 
flexuosum, 

AROOND, around ; often roond only. 

ARR, ** a skar/* ** Pock-arrs," the marks made by the small- 
pox. This is a general word common to both north and 
south. — i?av, 1691. Any scar from a healed wound is called 
an arr. ** He hes an art on his finger." 

ARRAGE, a sharp point or corner. — Min. Gloss.^ Newcastle 
Terms ^ 1852. 

ARSE-LOOP, a seat or wide loop in a rope or chain in which 
a man is slung when repairing or working in a pit-shaft. 

ARTH, earth, the earth. In S. Northumberland it isye-arih or 
ee-arth, 

AR-WO-HAY, a cartman's term to his horse to steady. 

ASIDE, beside. ** Sit doon aside us, hinney.'* 

ASIDEN, beside. ** She wis sittin* asiden him." 

ASK, a water newt, a lizard. The newt is usually called a 
watter ask,'* as distinguished from »* a dry osA-." 

" Soakes and nederes thar he fand, 
And gret blac tades gangand, 
And arskes and other wormes felle." 

•• Tale of a Usurer:' --Metrical Homilies (cir. 1330). 

** In the darksome depths of the pool is the water newt, Lacerta aquatica, 
while the nimUe little form of his much prettier companion, the lizard,' 
Lacerta agilis, is seen amongst the heather and shrubs on the hill. A 
popular belief once prevails! that these harmless little reptiles were 
venomous ; both are known under the local name of the *Ask: *' — D. D. 
Dixon, Vale of Wkittingham, 1887, p. 39. 

ASKLENT, aslant. 

ASPER, rough, fierce. In Old English Asperaunt is used. In 
the Life of Wallace it is : ** In Asper speech the Persye then 
gan spear." — Book v., p. 67. (Obs.) 

ASS, ashes from a fire. 

ASSAY! (/ say)^ a common exclamation. ^^ Assay ! what are 
ye dein there ? " 

ASS-HWOLE, an ash-hole, a receptacle for ashes. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I9 

ASS-MIDI^EN, ASS-PIT, an ash heap. 

ASSIL-TREE, an axle. See Aixel. 

ASSIL-TYEUTH, a grinder or molar tooth. 

AST, asked. 

ASTARN, astern. — Riverside term. 

ASTITE, just as soon, as lief. " Aa wad astite stop where aa is," 
" Ye*d astite gan wiv us." See Stite, Tite. 

ASTON lED, astonished. 

ASTRIDDLE, astride. 

AT, that. The a is pronounced very short, and the word sounds 
almost like it. "Them at*s gan up." ** He's se Strang at he 
can lift a seek o* floor." 

" At, 'at. A worn down form of that, perhaps from old Norse at (used 
in precisely the same senses), perhaps independently developed in the 
Northern dialect, in which it was very common in i4-i5th centuries ; 
rare, even in Scottish writers, after 1300; but still in regular use in 
Northern dialect speech." — Dr. Murray, New Eng> Diet. 

AT, sometimes used as for, ** What are ye stannin* there at ? " 
It is used in this sense in Sir Gawayne, See HalliwelVs Diet. 

AT ANES, AT YENCE, at once. Yen— one. Yence-^nce. 
"At ans alle thre he tok." 

Cursor Mundi, 

ATELIN, a yetling, or yetlin. This word occurs in one of the 
old parish books of Hexham, date 1702. In a list of plate 
and other property belonging to the church occurs '^a coffin 
to bury poor people. Itm. an atelin in the Abbey great 
kitchen." 

ATHER, an adder. Athtry-like^ like an adder. See Ether. 

" The eel, when crawling among the grass, has a very ' atthery-like* 
look."— Richard Howse, Sat. His. Transac, vol. x., 1890, p. 331. 

ATHER, a field. Before the commons enclosures, the tillage 
land was divided into ** fields." Each field consisted of a 
great number of scattered strips or ** yard lands." The 
" East field," «« West field," " North field," or other names 
given, represented groups of different freeholds — each owner 
having yard lands in all the ^'Atkers,'* or "fields." The 
object of this distinction in the grouping of the freeholds into 



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20 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

"fields'* was to arrange for a rotation of crops. Thus, the 
East field being fallow, the West field would be under oats, 
the North field under wheat, and so on in annual rotation. 
(Obs.) 

"In the county of Northumberland, speaking of their system of 
husbandry, they say they have their tillage land in three or four Atker$ — 
oats, fallow, wheat, or oats." — Hodgson MS. 

A-THIS-SIDE, on this side of. 

ATOMY, NOTOM Y, an excessively thin person. " He's just 
a bit atomy,** or ** He just like an atomy.** 

Queen Mab : " Drawn with a team of little atomus^-^Romeo and Juliet, 
act i., sc. 4. 

ATOPA, ATOPON, on the top of. " Yor fethor's atopa the 
hay-stack." "What he* ye atopa yor heed?" **AtoponsLn 
aad hoose." 

ATTACKTED, attacked. It is very commonly used in New- 
castle. 

" Attack*d-ed ; attacked, a common participle here, but more extensively 
used, I am told, in America/' — HalHwell. 

ATTERCOP, OTTERCOP. This word, says the Rev. John 
Hodgson, means a spider's web. A.S. Attercoppa, a spider. 
Mr. Morris {Specimens of Early English, p. 403) says that ** it 
signifies literally poison cup, from attor, alter, poison, and 
cuppa, a cup. Cob-y/eh ^Old English copweft) retains the last 
syllable only of the original word. In some of the Teutonic 
dialects, the spider is called a koppe, on account of its carrying 
a bag." A township in Redesdale is called Attercops, and Mr, 
Brockett thinks it derives its name " perhaps because in warm, 
hazy weather, in September, the grass and sparty ground is 
silvered over with gossamer, or cobwebs.*' The name is now 
written Ottercaps, but in old documents Aliertopps or Altircops. 
The word, according to Dr. Murray, Old English, Attorcoppa 
from a*tor, attor, poison, and coppa, derivative of cop, top, 
summit, round head, or copp, cup, vessel ; in reference to the 
supposed venomous properties of spiders. Compare also 
Dutch spinne-cop, " spider,*' and Cob-web, formerly cop-webhe ; 
whence it appears probable that the simple coppa was itself 
** spider." ist, a spider ; 2nd, figuratively, applied to a 
venomous, malignant person ; 3rd, misapplied to a spider's 
web. — New Eng. Diet, It is considered very unlucky to 
kill spiders." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 21 

ATWEE, in two, asunder. 

" Enough to rive atwee the heart." — ^Thomas Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 
1826 p. ii., V. 17. 

ATWEEN, between. *' AaVe many a time seen her haddin 
her heed atween her hands.*' 

•• It was atwien Hebburn and Jarrow, thor came on a varry Strang 
gale."— Song, Little Pee Dee, 

ATWIX, betwixt. ** He was atwix an atween the twee." 

AT-YENCE, AT-YANCE, at once. 

AUD, old. See Aad. 

AUKERT [N.], awkward. 

AUMBLING, walking. 

" Teach him aumbling by the hand 
Till he his paces understand." 

JocO'Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 67, 

AUWERT, awkward, athwart, as a sheep on its back unable 
to rise. This is probably the same as over-thwart. Compare 

AWELT. 

" On tham gang 
To and fra, over-thewrt and endlang'* 
Hampole, d. 1349, ** The Priche of Conscience,** Morris, line 8582. 

AVELINGES, in an oblong, or oval shape; but possibly 
applied also to a piece tapering at each end. Major Moor 
says, " Workmen — reapers or mowers — approaching the side 
of a field not perpendicular or parallel to their line of work, 
will have an unequal portion to do ; the excess or deficiency, 
is called avellong work." — HalliwelVs Diet, under Avelong, 
The avelong here would appear to be the gore or triangular- 
shaped piece left after working square in the field, and it 
suggests that a piece of cloth cut *• avelinges " may possibly 
be a square piece cut diagonally from corner to corner, so as 
to make two triangular-shaped pieces. ** I will that on my 
day of burial be given thirteen grey gowns to thirteen poor 
women, and each to have half a yard of linen cloth cut avelinges, 
instead of hoods, which I have ready made." — Durham Wills — 
Barbara Thomlinson, i577« — Quoted, R. Welford, Hist. ofNewc, 
XVI. Cent. J p. 507. The apparent use of the half yard of 
linen cloth is for the white scarf or shawl, worn at funerals 
by poor women to the present day. 



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22 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

AVER, a beast of burden, a draught ox, or horse; hence, 
specially a horse used for heavy work, a cart horse : and in 
later usage in Northumberland dialect an old or worthless 
horse; 1691 Blount : Law Dictionary y under word Ajffiri {transl. 
Spelnian). In Northumberland, to this day, they call a dull 
or slow horse a false aver or afer, — Dr. Murray, l^ew Eng, Diet. 
A ver acres and Overacres occur as field names in several parts 
of Northumberland. 

•• They have pasture there for 100 sheep ; and 30 avers or horned 
cattle, and four horses." — Hexham Ckartulary, folio 14 b. and 15. 

** Carrying services are familiar in manorial records under the name of 
' averagium.* " — Seebohm, Early Village Communities, p. 247. 

"From old French aveir, aver; modern French avoir, possession, 
property, stuff, ' stock/ cattle, domestic animals, beasts of burden ; literally 
' having,' substantive use of aveir, avoir. Latin, habere^ to have." — New 
Eng. Diet. 

AVER, peevish, Northumberland. — HalliwelVs Diet. 

AVERISH, average. '* It's oney an averish crop." 

AVERISH, AVERAGE, the breaking of corn fields ; eddish, 
roughings. — Rafs Collection of North-Country Words, 1691. 
The stubble and grass left in corn after harvest — the portion 
of the avers. — Brockett. 

*' In these monthes after the cornne bee inned, it is meete to putt 
draughte horsses and oxen into the averish." — Archceologia, xiij., 379. — 
Quoted, HalliwelVs Diet. 

"To have, occupy, and enjoy all such averyshe and stowbles.'*— Richard 
Welford, Hist. ofNewc, XVI. Cent., p. 368. 

AW. See A a and following words. 

AWAR, aware. Shortened often to war. " He*d getten in 
afore aa wis awar.'' 

AWAY, constantly used for go, or go away. ** Aa mun away " — 
I must go. ** Let's away " — let us go. 

AWAY-GANNIN, going away. '* Away-gannin crop," the 
cereals belonging to the outgoing tenant of a farm. 

A WELT, A WELD, AWERT, laid on the back; said of a 
sheep when cast upon its back and unable to move. See 
Cassen and Auwert. 

** Some cauld mornin they'll fin' ye, I ween 
Lyin awelt and frozen by Wa' bittle Dene." 

James Armstrong, Anither Sang, 1872. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 23 

AWNS, the beards of barley or wheat. 

AX, to ask. In the royal style of assenting to bills in 
Parliament, the phrase ** Be as it is axed " was used. 
WicklifFe's Gospel has : ** What schal I axe ? And she seide, 
the heed of John Baptist." Chaucer also uses the same word, 
but we do not find it used by Spenser. Hence we may conclude 
that by the time of Elizabeth it had been superseded in the 
literary dialect by the present form ** ask." Ask is originally the 
northern form, but ax is constantly used in Northumberland. 

" I moved you first, my Lord of Canterbury, axing your license to put 
this matter in question." — Cavendish, Life of Wolsey. 

AX AT CHURCH, to publish the banns of matrimony. 

AY-DI-MI ! a common exclamation expressive of regret or pity, 
Probably shortened from Ah, dear me! Familiarised by 
Thomas Carlyle's letters, but often heard as a sigh expressed 
by old people in Northumberland. 

A.YOU.A.HINNY,A-U-HlNNYBORD, a Newcastle lullaby. 

•• It's O but aw ken well — A-U, hinny bord. 
The bonny lass o' Benwell — A-U, hinny bord, 
She's lang legg'd an mother hke, A-U. hinny bord. 
See, she*s raking up the dyke, A-U-A.'* 

Old song. 
" A'U'A, maw bonny bairn, 
A-U- At upon my airm, 
A'U-Af thou suen may laim 
Te say dada se canny." 

Robt. Nunn, Sandgate IVifa's Nurse Song. 



AYONT, beyond. 



' Toil and pain ayont conceivin." 

Pitman's Pay^ part ij., v. 71. 



AYLE, always, all along. (Obs.) 

*' And ayle I whistled as I came." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discoursj, 1686. 

AY-THE-MAIR, all the more. 

BAA I an exclamation of wonderment. ** Aa wis gan ower the 
moor an* a great coo wis runnin' mad-like. She chased fower 
or five folk, yen efter the other, an' thor wis a greet crood 
stannin' aboot. A sailor chep comes up ; tyeks the beast bi 
the horns ; an' torns hor reet ontiv hor back. An' aall the 
people ses * Baa V " — Local anecdote, 

BAADY, bawdy, lewd. 

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^4 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BAAK, BALK [S. and T.] ,BAWK, BAULK, BOAK [W.-T.] . 

1. A piece of unploughed turf left between the ploughed 
lands as a boundary in the open town fields. The freeholds, 
in the system of cultivation before the Commons Enclosure 
Acts, were thus divided. 

" The whole arable area of an uninclosed township was usually divided 
up by turf balks into as many thousand of these strips as its limits would 
contain — the balks which divide into strips being, as the word implies, 
simply two or three furrows left unploughed between."— Seebohm, 
English Village Community^ 1884, p. 3-4. 

2. Applied sometimes to the ploughed strip itself. 

'* A little bank near the dene, containing by estimation 3} acres." — R. 
Welford, Hist, of Newc. and Gattshead, XVI. Cent., p. 168. See Rban. 

3. '* A ridge or piece left unploughed by accident or 
carelessness ; a piece missed in ploughing." — Dr. Murray, 
New Eng, Diet. 

4. A square piece of timber. The roof timber in a coal-pit. 
" We must have either oaken spars or firr bawks.'* — J C, The Compleat 

Collier, 1708, p. 15. 

5. A rafter or tie beam. In old one-storey houses they were 
often exposed and used for hanging or placing articles on. — 
Dr. Murray, New Eng, Diet, 

6. A roost for a bird. ** The burd sits moping o' the balk^ 
like somethin' iv a flay." — T. Wilson, The Washing Day, 1843. 
The ** hen haaks " are the hen roosts. 

7. Where the roof of a mine is not level, but comes down 
into the coal without any corresponding depression of the 
thill, thus causing a nip (called also a roll^ or horseback), or, 
where the coal seam is cut off with a wash. 

8. To " lay to the balks " is used metaphorically to denote a 
disuse of any implement or instrument. 

BAAKS, or "BALKS AND BREDS," beam and scales for 
weighing. 

BAAKY, a piece of wood with rope attached put round a cow's 
neck to tie her up to the stake. The wood is also called a 
•* baikie-stick " and the rope a ** baikie-tow." 

BAAL, to bawl. 

BAAL, BAA [S. and T.], BO [W.-T.], a ball. "Buy the 
bairn a stottin'-6fla/." 

BAAL-PYET, bald pate. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 25 

BAA- WAA-BODY, a silly or insignificant person. " Hadaway ! 
he's oney a baa-waa-body.'' 

BAB, Barbara. 

BABBLEMENT, a confused noise of talk. **Thor myekin* 
sic a babbUnufU 'at ye canna hear yorsel speak." 

BABBY-BOODIES, broken crockery, used as playthings by 
children. See Boody. 

BABBY-HOOSE, a figure representing a •*hoose" made by 
children with stones, or preferably with pieces of china (boodies) 
or shells (chucks), 

BAB-NET, a net used on the Northumberland coast. 

At Holy Island, " in fishing for sea trout off rock ends they use a 
bob-net of five inch mesh, in which the fish are caught by the gills. A 
net of this kind, thirty-two meshes deep, will sound eleven feet in slack 
tide." — S. Oliver, Ramble's in Northumberland, 1835, P- 22^* 

BACCY, nonsense. " It's aall baccy:' 

BACK, behind. ** He wis back o* the engine-hoose at the time." 
See Aback. 

BACK, a fishing line used for haddocks, &c., at sea. The back 
is the principal line to which snoods are spliced, each snood 
being attached to a hook by a hair line. 

BACK, a parting in the seam of coal. 

" A slippery division in the coal seam, extending from the thill to the 
roof." — Min. Gloss. ^ Newc, Terms, 1852. 

*' A fissure in the coal, having an angle with the position of the seam." — 
Brockett. 

" A diagonal parting in coal ; a description of hitch where the strata are 
not dislocated. At a back there is frequently a glossy parting, and 
sometimes a little sooty dirty coal. When, on approaching a back, it is 
observed to form an acute angle with the thill of the seam, it is called an 
e^st back ; when it forms an obtuse angle, it is called a west back. Thus 
the same back will be an east or west back, according to the direction from 
which it is aimed through. As there is rarely anything to indicate a back, 
and as there is little or no cohesion between its faces, the coal often 
unexpectedly falls away and causes accident." — Greenwell. 

" A bach or knowe sometimes, 'tis true, 
Set down ma top wi' ease eneuf ; 
But oftener far we had te tue 
On wi' a nast^ scabby roof." 

Thos. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v. 77. 



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26 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BACK, to fill in the space behind the rings of cribbing in a 
pit-shaft. See Backing-deals. 

The sinking " was cribbed and backed, and then walled." — Bormgs and 
Sinkings, A.B., p. lo. 

BACKBOARD, or BAKEBOARD, a paste or baking board. 

BACK-BY, just behind. Away from the face of the coal 
nearer the shaft is said to be ** back-by,'' 

BACKCAST, a relapse, or any kind of throwing back. "Aa 
wis gettin* nicely better, but aa's hed a sair backcast.^' 

BACK-END, the annexe at the back of a house. 

BACK-END, ** the part of a judd left in the working place of 
a pit after the sump is brought down." — Min. Gloss., Newc. 
Terms y 1852. 

BACK-END, autumn. '* Last back-end,"' last autumn. 

BACKERLY, backward, late in season. ** The tormits is 
varry backcrly thae *ear." 

BACK-GANNIN, a retrograding in circumstances or health. 

BACKING-DEALS, deals placed behind cribs to keep back 
loose strata. — Gloss, of N ewe. Min, Terms, 1852. See Back, 4. 

BACK-0-BEYONT, of an unknown distance. See Aback-a- 

BEYONT. 

BACK-OVERMAN, an overman who has the immediate 
inspection of the workings and workmen during the back- 
shih. — Coal Trade Gloss., 1849. 

** The back-overman superintends the management of the pit from the 
time the overman leaves until 5 o'clock in the evening, when the^pit is 
said to * loose ' or stop work." — Dr. R. Wilson. Coal Miners, Durham and 
Northumberland. 

BACK-OWER, a return back. ** He cam back-ower tiv us." A 
fall backwards. ** He went back-ower."' 

BACK-SHIFT. The fore-shift and back-shift are the first and 
second shifts of hewers that go down the pit. See Fore-shift. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 27 

BACK-SIDE, the back premises of a house or building. Billy 
Purvis used to invite the crowd from his front stage to enter 
his show, adding : ** Them 'at dissent like to waak ower the 
stage can come in bi Billy's backside.'' The backside of a 
church is the north side. Burials formerly were only made 
on the south side. 

" Nicholas Ward, unfortunately smoord to death in sinking for a draw- 
well in his father's back-sid$t loth February, 1716." — Sharp, Chronicon 
MirabU. 

In the books of the Folly Water Works Company, Newcastle, is the 
following entry : " Robt. Attkinson cutt himselle off, hauving sunck a 
well in his back-side, at Michas, 1717, wch. supply's hime." — Mackenzie, 
Hist, of N ewe., p. 725, note. 

•• While she were drunken— she left her left foot shoe upon Mr. Anderson s 
bac-syd when she climbed over the wall.** — R. Welford, Hist, of 
Newe., XVI. Cent., p. 389. 

" As up Jenny *s backside we were bangin, 
Ki Geordy. How ! where are ye gannin ? " 

Song, **Bob Cranky' s 'Size Sunday.'* 

Allan's Collection f 1863, p. 317. 

BACK-SKIN, a strong hide or covering worn on the back by 
sinkers and men in pumping pits or wet places. A back-skin 
was also worn by a putter's "foal" as a protection when he 
had to thrust back against a loaded corf in its descent of an 
incline in a pit. 

BACKSTER, BAXTER, a baker. 

BACKSTONE. See Bakstone. 

BACK-UP, to subscribe. ** We've caaled to see if ye'U 
back-up the list." To support. " If ye'U just gan on, noo, 
we'll back-ye up'^ 

BACKUS, the back-house, or wash-house, or more generally 
bake-house. — HalliwelVs Did. as Backas. 

BACKWATTER, the still or dead water that rises in a field 
or back place during a river flood ; the overflow from a mill race. 

BAD, ill. 

•• He lucks, poor body, verra bad,*^ 

T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1826, p. 15. 

" Sometime since a pitman wis tyen varry bad." 

W. Armstrong, Tke Glister, 1833-A. 

" The time that me fether wis bad," 

Joe Wilson^ d. 1875. 



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28 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BAD, past tense of bid = bade. " He bad us bide where we 
wor." 

BADGERy a black coaly band approaching towards an inferior 
coarse coal ; a term similar to '* Macket'* — S. C. Crone, 
Borings and Sinkings, F.K. p. iii, note, 

BADGER, "one who buys com and other commodities and 
carries them elsewhere to sell ; an itinerant dealer, who acts as 
middleman between producer (farmer, fisherman, &c.) and 
consumer ; a cadger, hawker, or huckster. Still common in 
the dialects." — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. This word is 
given by Brockett, but is now probably altogether obsolete in 
Northumberland. 

BADLY, ill, somewhat unwell. "She's nobbut hadly^ poor 
body." 

BADLY-OFF, poor, in want. 

BAD-MAN, the devil. " If ye gan on se the had-man'M get ye." 
See Aad'un. 

BAD-MAN^S OATMEAL, the flower and seed of the hemlock, 
Conium maculatum. See Deed-man's Oatmeal. 

BAD-WEATHER-GEORDY, a name by which the cockle 
seller is known. 

" As the season at which cockles are in greatest demand is generally the 
most stormy in the year — September to March— the sailors* wives at the 
seaport towns of Northumberland and Durham consider the cry of the 
cockle man as the harbinger of bad weather, and the sailor, when he 
hears the cry of ' cockles alive,' in a dark wintry night, concludes that 
a storm is at hand, and breathes a prayer, backwards, for the soul of 
*Bad'Weather'Geordy.* " — S. Oliver, RambUs in Northumberland, 1835, p. 207. 

BAER, BEAR, a blacksmith's tool for punching holes in iron. 
'* To Robert Thickpenny, his servant, a pair of bellows, a fore hammer, 
a nail hammer, and a baer.'" — Will of Rd. Hogg , of Newcastle, blacksmith. 
Proved yd January, 1502.— R. Welford, Hist. ofNewc., XVI. Cent., p. 2. 

BAFF, blank. A pitman, if paid fortnightly, speaks of the 
alternate weeks as " the haff week," and ** the pay week." 
•• The Baff week is o'er — no repining — 
Pay Saturday's swift on the wing.'* 

Henry Robson, " The Collier's Pay Week.'* 

Allan's Collection, 1863, p. 237. 
•• A card not a trump is a baff one. The partly decayed, split, or root 
end of a log or tree of timber is also called the baff end ; and from the 
baff ends, or otherwise useless pieces or ends of timber, are cut baffs, 
which are used to keep the wooden cribs in position, when sinking pits in 
our North-Country.*' — Newcastle Weekly Chronicle, May 15, 1886. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 29 

BAFF-ENDED, blunted. Picks are said to be so when the 
points are off. — Brockeit. 

BAFFLET, a wooden mallet for killing salmon. It is esteemed 
very unlucky to produce the bafflet until the fish are drawn 
ashore. 

BAG, dismissal. **He*s gettin* the bag" means "He's been 
dismissed." This is just as frequently expressed "gettin* 
the seckJ* The explanation of this curious phrase seems to 
be in a reference to the payment received on dismissal, 
which would be carried in a sack, or bag. The man dismissed 
would thus go off with ** bag and baggage." 

" An' we maun shortly follow them. 
An' tyek the bag, maw worthy gentles. 
Then what'U poor Newcastle dee, 
Deprived o' aa her ornamentals ? " 

R. Gilchrist, •• Bold Arehy^ 

Allan's ColUctiont p. 77. 

BAG, the paunch, the udder of a cow. 

" Next to the tents* we hied, te get 
Some stuffin' for wor bags, man." 

W. Mitford.A:.y.Z. 

BAG, a cavity found occasionally in fiery seams of coal, 
containing highly condensed gas. Usually called ** a bag of 
gas" Also, a cavity in a pit, filled with water, as, "a bag 
of water. ^' 

BAGGIE, the belly. 

BAGGIE, the stickleback, or prickleback fish. Gasterosteus 
aculeaiuSf Linn, 

"Which the North of England boys call the baggie ."-^Newcastle Daily 
Chronicle, Jan. 4. 1888. 

BAGGISH, baggage. 

BAGGIT-FISH, a salmon on the eve of depositing its ova. — 
James Armstrong, The Curing of Salmon Roe. 

BAGGOT, BAGGISH, useless, contemptible. It is applied 
to a little, vixenish child, or to a worthless man, ♦* a drunken 
baggot.'* ** Come oot ! ye baggish.** 

BAGGY, corpulent. 

BAGGY-MENIM, the three-spined stickleback. See Bain- 
stickle. 



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30 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BAG IE (the a sounded as in bay, the g hard), a Swede turnip. 
The term is never applied to white or yellow turnips, 

*' From Ruta Baga, the Swedish tarnip/'— No/« by Mr. Richard Wel/ord. 

BAIDE ; endured— N<?r^/k/. HdliweWs Diet., from Bide. 

BAIKIE-STICK, a piece of wood attached to a cow*s neck. 

BAIKIE-TOW, a rope for tying up a cow. 

BAIL, BALE, a signal of alarm, a bon-fire. — Brockeit. 

BAILIWICK, the limits within which a bailiff of the duke 
exercises jurisdiction. — Newbum Bailiwick, &c. 

BAINSTICKLE, the three-spined stickleback. Gastercsteus 
aadeatus, Linn. 

BAIRN, a child. The power of a homely word is in no case 
more exemplified than in the use of the word bairn. It is full 
of affectionate tenderness, and whether used in old ballad or 
in the folk-speech of the present day it equally breathes a spirit 
of yearning love for the little folk. A bit batm or a bairnie is 
a little child. The pronunciation is sometimes lengthened, 
and a mother is heard to call **Gan up to the barin!'* or 
** Mind the baiorin I " 

*' Where hest te been, maw canny hinny ? 
Where hest te been, maw bonny bairn ? '* 

Song, " Maw Canny Hinny,*' 

Allan's Collection^ p. 2S4. 

BAIRNISH, childish. 

BAIRN*S-PLAY, childVplay. 

BAIRN-TEAM, broods of children, as they expound it to 
me. — Ray$ Glossary, under Bearnteams. 

BAIRSE, BAISE, the space for provender in a cow stall. 

BAIRSE, BAERSE, impertinent, impudent. 

BAISEL [N.] , to bustle about, to exert oneself here and there. 
'* A'm baiselin ma sel ta get dyun i' time te catch the train." 

BAIST, to beat. See Baste. 

*' He paid good Robin back and side, 
And baist him up and down ; 
And with his pyke-staff laid on loud, 
Till he fell m a swoon." 

Robin Hood, i., 102, quoted by Halliwell. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 3 1 

BAIT, to feed. " Hadaway bait the horses." 

BAIT, food; BAIT-POKE, food bag. 

*' With a tin bottle, full of cold water or tea. a piece of bread, which is 
called his bait, the hewer says good-bye to his wife, and speeds off to 
work." — Dr. R. Wilson, Coal Miners of Northumberland and Durham. 

•* Aw put the bait -poke on at eight, 
Wi* sark and hoggers. like ma brothers." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. ii. 

BAIT, the longitudinal direction of wood, the grain, as it is 
called. After wood has pined it is said, ** You can see .the 
bait'' — that is, the grain has become visible. 

BAITIES, fisher girls who gather bait. 

BAKE-STICKS. See Beak-sticks. 

BAKIN, the number of loaves baked for a household at one 
time. *• A bakin o* breed." 

BAKSTONE, a flat stone used for baking oat-cakes, &c. 

" The bakstone was often three or four feet in diameter, capable of 
holding two cakes, and fixed upon three or four low pillars : the girdle 
was less and lighter, and upon an iron tripod, called a brandreth."— > 
Hodgson, Northumberland, pt. ij., vol. ij., p. 306, note. 

BALD-COOT, BAL-POOt, or BELL-POOT, the coot. 
Fulica atra, Linn. 

BALK, a beam. See Baak. 

BALL, the charge from a puddling fiurnace, also the fused 
materials from an alkali maker's balling furnace. 

BALL, a nodule. " Ironstone balls.'' 

** Brown thill mixed with post balls" — Borings and Sinkings, A.B., p. 146. 

BALL-FURNACE, the furnace used for fusing a mixture of 
limestone, coal, and sulphate of soda, in alkali works. 

BALLANT, a ballad. 

•• Aw liked a ballant or a buik." — T. 'Wilson, Pitman's Pay ^ 1829, pt. iii„ 

V. lOI. 

BALLINGER, the ancient name for a vessel carrying about 
forty men, acting in a fleet, apparently, as a frigate. (Obs.) 

" Every great ship must have attending upon him a barge and a 
baUingerr- R. Welford, Newc., XV. Cent., p. .305. 



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32 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BALL-MONEY, money demanded of a marriage company and 
given to prevent their being maltreated. In the North, it is 
customary for a party to attend at the church gates, after a 
wedding, to enforce this claim. The gift has received this 
denomination, as being originally designed for the purchase 
of a football. — Brockett, 3rd. ed., p. 23. 

B ALN-STONE, roof stone in a pit. See Barn-styen. 

BAND, the string by which the old spinning wheel was driven. 
** To keep the band in the nick " is an expression used to 
'denote ability to continue in any given way. 

BAND, a thin layer of stone or shale interstratified with coal. 
Sometimes applied to a thin stratum of any kind from half 
an inch to six inches in thickness. Compare Girdle. 

BAND, a broad flat hinge. 

BAND-GANNER, the sheldrake, Tadoma belonii, Ray. This 
bird has a band of rusty red colour, and flies with great 
speed — ^hence its name. 

BANDISH, a bandage. 

BANDOLEERS, cartouche boxes with leather sling bands. 
(Obs.) 

" Pd. one paire o{ bandelearst 7s"— Gateshead Church Boohs^ 1634. 

" Pd. for fower pair of new bandaUers with bellts strings and baggs, 
7s. 6." — The same, 1669. 

Also variously in same, bandaleryes, bandeleraws. 

BANDSTER, a sheaf binder in the harvest field. 

BAND-STONE, the stone immediately overlaying the coal 
at the shaft and projecting into it. — Brocheit. See Barn- 
styen. 

BANDWIN, BANDSWIN, a band of six reapers occupying 
a man to bind after them. Six are usually as many as a 
bandster can conveniently bind after. 

BANDY, traversed by hands. See Band, 2. 

"Hard scare bandy coal." — Borings and Sinkings, A.B., p. 163. 
*'Coal, foul, scared, bandy .^'—The same, p. 66. 

BANE [N.], a bone. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 33 

BANE-WORT, the daisy. 

"The northern men call the herb a banwurt^ because it helpeth bones 
to knit again." — Turner's Herbal, i, 78. in Hodgson MS. 

BANG, a strong fir pole, used in the game of *< pitching the 
bang"; a long pole used for guiding or propelling a boat, or 
as a lever, or the poles used in carrying hay when two people 
take the bangs between them. A "cow bang*^ is a pole in a 
byre to which a cow is fastened. 

The following challenge appeared in the Newcastle Journal of June 29, 
1754 (see Sykes's Local Records) : — " I take the liberty, after this publick 
manner, to acquaint the country, that Peter Ditchbum, of Mainsforth, 
in the County of Durham, will throw the long bowles, a pound-and-a- 
half weight, leap, and pitch the bang with any man in England, for ten or 
twenty pounds, and meet them at any place within twenty miles of 
Mainsforth aforesaid." 

BANG, to strike violently with a resounding blow ; to thrust 
off violently ; to rush violently ; to surpass, to excel, to outdo. 

'•The blacksmith's hammer, yark for yark, 
We bear ne langer bangin\" 

T. Wilson, Oiling of Dicky's Wig, 1826. 

" And, ay, as the ship came to the land, she banged it off again.'*— TA^ 
Laidley Worm of Spindleston Heugh. 

"Then helter-skelter in we bang.^—T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt- 3» 
iii., 84. 

" For X Y Z, that bonny steed, he bangs them a' for pith and speed." — 
W. Mitford, d. 1841, song: X Y Z at Newcastle Raus.-^Allan's Collection, 
p. 117. 

"East Heddon, West Heddon, Heddon on the Waall, 
Harlow Hill, an' Horsley, an' Wylam bangs them aall." 

Old saying, 

"Bradford breedless, Hamham heedless, 
Shaftee pick at the craa ; 
Capheaton's a wee bonny place. 
But Wallin'ton bangs them aa." 

Old verse, 

" The Reenes, an' the Riding, Langhaugh and The Shaw, 
Bellingham Bogglehole bangs them a'." 

These rude rhymes were frequently repeated at the hirings in 
allusion to the relative merits of the various "places." 
Some of them conveyed a warning of ** bad meat houses " — 
that is, where scant rations prevailed. 

BANGER, anything very large in proportion to its kind. — 
Hodgson MS. 



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34 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BANGIN, large and jolly, as ** a hangin' lass." 

** Wor business duin, vfor pitcher tuim, 
Jack out bis private bottle drew, 
And wi' a bangin' glass o* rum. 
We finished off as it struck two." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 74. 

BANISTY, or BENISTY, anything done secretly. What is 
forbidden, or ** banned,** is termed ** done under hanistyJ* 

BANK, an incline, a steep road or street. Butcher Bank, Byker 
Bank, Lang Bank, Saltwell Bank, Sodhouse Bank, Forth 
Bank, &c. 

BANK, the surface, or top, of the pit. ** At bank" 

" You are to buy in a stock of horses to draw your coals to bank 
(or day) out of the pit.** — CompUat Collier, 1708, p. 32. 

BANK-OUT, to teem the coals into a heap as they are drawn, 
instead of into the waggons. — Coal Trade Gloss,, 1849. 

BANKSIDE, the side of a slope. "The Banksidc*' in New- 
castle. 

BANKSMAN, the man who has control of the shaft top. He 
regulates the descent of the pitmen, lands the coals at the top 
of the pit, draws the full tubs from the cages, and replaces 
them with empty ones. He also puts the full tubs to the 
screens, and teems the coals. 

*' The Banck^s-man, or he that guides the sledge horse, has an empty 
sledge to set the loaden corfe on,"-^ompUat Collurt 1708, p. 56. 

BANKY, having many banks. ** A banky road *' is a road with 
many hills, or ups and downs. 

BANNIELS, baggage. " He's off wi* aa his hannUUr 

BANNOCK, a thick cake of oaten or barley meal kneaded with 
water. 

" The word is adopted from Gaelic hannach, query an adaption of Latin 
pdnicium, formed on pdnis, bread." — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

•• A thick cake bak't before the fire."— G. Stuart, Joeo-Serious Discourse, 
Newcastle, 1686, p. 62. 

BANTY, BANTLIN, a bantam. 

BAP, a baker's roll. " A penny hap ** is a penny roll. 

BAR, p.t. of hear. " He har up like a man.** 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 35 

BAR, naked. " He wis iv his bar skin." 

BARBER-EEL, the viviparous hlenny, Zoarces viviparus^ Cuvier. 

BAREBACKS, turnips with the tops cut off. 

BARFIT, bare-footed, shoeless and stockingless. 

BARGAIN, a piece of work to be done at a certain price. 
Newc, Min, Gloss., 1852. Special work let by proposal, 
amongst the workmen at a colliery, to the lowest offer. 

In lead mining, "Miners generally take a certain length of ground, 
extending either twelve, fifteen, or twenty fathoms, in which they propose 
to raise ore, for a fixed time, at so much per bing, according to the 
richness, quality, or hardness of the mine. These bargains are taken in 
partnerships, consisting of from two to eight men.'* — Mackenzie, Hist, of 
Northumhtrland, 1825, vol. i., p. 100. 

BARGAIN -MEN, men who work by the bargain at special 
work, such as stone or coal drifting, rolleyway making, &c. 

BARGE-DAY, or BARGE-THURSDAY. Ascension-Day, 
on which the Mayor and Corporation of Newcastle, with the 
Master and Elder Brethren of the Trinity House, in their 
respective State barges, rowed over the tidal limits of the 
river Tyne from the Spar Hawk to Hedwin Streams, within 
which the Corporation of Newcastle claimed right to the soil 
of the river. As an annual custom this has been abandoned, 
but is now carried out at longer intervals with little of the 
ancient pomp and pageantry which formerly characterised it. 
Compare Gang-wbek. 

'* O would the Tyne but cease to flow. 
Or. like a small burn, bubble 
There would not be a barge-day now ; 

Nor we have all this trouble ; 
But here, alas, we sailing roam 

About its conservation, 
Instead of sleeping safe at home — 
O what a Corporation 1 " 

R. Gilchrist, 1835, "A New Song for the Barge-Day," 
Bards of the Tyne, p. 398. 

BAR-GUEST. The Brag and the Bar-ghaist are both of them 
local **boggles." See Guest, Geyest, and Brag. 

'* Barghest. Also harghaist, guest, ghost, gest, gaist [perhaps adapted from 
Gennan berg-geist, mountain demon, gnome; but by Scott referred to 
German bahre, bier, hearse, and bv others to German bdr, bear, with 
reference to its alleged form] . A goblin, fabled to appear in the shape of 
a large dog, with various horrible characteristics, and to portend 
imminent death or misfortune."— Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet, 



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36 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BARING, in a quarry, the superficial deposits or other beds 
that have to be bared or removed. — Hugh Miller, Geology of 
Otterburn and Elsdon. — Geological Survey Memoir, 1887. 

BARISH, scanty, rather bare. **The cupboard wis barish."' 
" Thor wis a barish market the day." He's barish o* brass the 
noo." 

BARK, a cylindrical receptacle for candles; a candle-box. At 
first it was only a piece of bark nailed up against the wall. — 
HdliwelVs Did. 

BARK, to abrade the skin. 

BARK, a bad cough. 

BARKEN, BARCLE, to clot, to harden. "Let the blood 
barken on the sare; it saves plaisters." Generally used in 
connection with the coagulation of blood. 

BARKER, a tanner. "The Incorporated Company of Barkers 
or Tanners in Newcastle." (Obs.) 

BARKHAAM, a draught-horse's collar. See Bra'am and 
Briham. 

BARLEY, to claim. The word is used in a curious sense, 
almost always by children in play. The expressions, "He 
barleyed that seat," "Aa barleyed the shul," mean that at 
sight of the articles one has been first to cry out, ^^ Barley 
me that seat, or that shovel." The first to do so has a right 
to the use of the article named, and it is a point of honour 
among lads to acknowledge and give place to the one so doing. 

BARLEY-BAY, BARLEY-FAA, or BARLEY-FAA-AN'- 
KING'S SPEECH, a parley or truce; a temporary suspen- 
sion of a game. The words always mean that the speaker 
wishes the game to stop until some point of order is settled. 
In the New Eng. Dict.y barley is said to be " perhaps a corruption 
of French parlez^ English parky.** This definition exactly 
corresponds to the local use of the word. To barley a thing 
is to speak first for it. Compare Barley above. 

BARLEY-DUGGAR, a cake made of barley meal. Called 
also Barley-dick. 

BARMEKIN, or BARNEKIN. a fortified wall about a peel- 
tower or castle. — Hodgson MS. 

** The outermost ward of a castle, within which the bams, stables, 
cowhouses, &c., were placed."— H«WfwW/'s Diet. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 37 

BARN-STYEN, the roof of the pit at the entrance of the 
workings. 

•• Wor nose within the ham-styen set." — ^T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. ii. 
1827, V. 31. 

BARRAS, obsolete form of barrace, from the Old French barras, 
f. bane bar, a barrier or outwork in front of a fortress, the bar 
of a tribunal, a hindrance or obstruction, the enclosure within 
which knightly encounters took place ; the lists. The word 
in Barras Bridge in Newcastle is apparently derived from the 
lists, or barrasy where knightly encounters took place outside 
the town in open field. Both ancient spelling and that surer 
guide, the folk-speech, preserve to us the word barras^ not the 
barrows (or graves of the lepers), as a last century antiquary 
ingeniously surmised. 

BARRA-STYEN, the stones of the fireplace to which the bars 
are fixed; the stone seat in an "ingle neuk." This was 
frequently a disused and inverted " creein trou" or "bear- 
stone." 

BARRATER, a brawler. (Obs.) 

•• For harratUrs or disorderly persons." — Presentments of offences 
committed in the parish of Gateshead. — Rd. Welford, Hist, of N ewe. and 
Gateshead, XVI, Cent., p. 458. 

BARRIED, buried. 

*' Here a' wor bairns may christend be, 
Wor lads and lasses married — 
And when at last we droop and dee. 
Here we may a' be harried,** 

T. Wilson. Oiling of Dicky's Wig, 1826, v. 52. 

BARRIER, a strong pillar of coal left between two royalties, 
or between two districts of workings, for security against 
casualty arising from water or foul air. 

BARRIES, berries. 

BARRIN-OOT. See Nicholas Day. 

BARROW, in a pit, the sledge, or tram, on which corves were 
"hailed.'' 

BARROW-COAT, BARRICOAT, an infant's first underdress. 



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38 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BARROW-MAN, a putter; one who puts the tubs of coals 
from the working places to the cranes, flats, or stations, 
whence they are taken by horses along the main or rolley- 
ways to the shaft. — Gloss, of Coal Trade, 1849. The term 
barrow-man is very old, for in a lease of five mines in the 
Manor of Whickham, by Bishop Hatfield, in 1356, "cynq 
barrowemen" — five barrow-men — are mentioned. 

*' Trams in a pit were formerly worked by patters and barrow-men, the 
latter pulling before, and the former putting or thrusting behind : boys 
about fifteen or sixteen years old are employed in this department of the 
colliery." — A Description cf Felling Colliery previous to May 25, 1812, by 
the Rev. John Hodgson. 

'* There is another sott of labourers which are called Barrow-nun, or 
Coal-Putters, these persons take the hewed coal from the hewers as they 
work them, or as fast as they can, and filling the corves with these 
wrought coals, put or pull away the full corves of coals, which are set, 
when empty, upon a sledge of wood, and so "hailed" all along the 
barrow- way to the pit shaft by two or three persons, one before and 
another behind the corfe." — ^J.C, Compleat Collier, 1708, p. 36. 

BARROW-PIG, a castrated boar. 

BARROW- WAY, " an old term for tramway, originally from 
the time when the coals were brought out from the workings 
in barrows." — Min. Gloss. Newc. Terms, 1852. 

" Corves are set upon a sledge of wood, and so " hailed'* all along the 
harrow-way to the pit shaft." — ^J.C, Compleat Collier, 1708, p. 36. 

BARRY, to bury. 

"A corp they're gaun to barfy.**—T. Wilson, Captains and the Quayside, 
1843. 

BARRY, to thrash corn. 

BARTLE-KNOT, the knot nearest the ground in straw. 

BA-SANG! MA-SANG 1 a common exclamation. **Ba-5angI 
but he'll get it het noo." 

BASEL, to run in a hurried and laborious manner. See 
Baisel. 

BASELER, a person who takes care of neat cattle. — Brockett. 
See Baisel. 

BASH, to drive or dint with violence. **Aa bashed me heed 
again the top." " Hi, canny man, ye've bashed yor hat." 
'* She bashed the door i* me fyece." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 39 

BASH, a heavy blow that beats or smashes in a surface, — Dr. 
Murray, New Eng. Did, 

BASLARD, a long dagger, generally worn suspended from the 
girdle. Hall^ Henry VI., folio loi, mentions "asoutherne 
byl to contervayle a northern bastard ^'^ so that perhaps in his 
time the weapon was more generally used in the North of 
England.— Ho/Ztw^/rs Diet. (Obs.) 

BASON-CROP, hair of the head cut straight round. 

Three apprentices, " showing themselves disobedient and very obstinate, 
■were first in open court (where a dish is said to have been kept, by the 
edge of which their hair was cut round) made exemplary by shortninge 
their hair." — Boohs of Merchant Adventurers, l^ewcsAile^ December 7, 1649. 

BASS, the soft reeds from which bass-mats^ &c., are made ; also 
the mat made from bass, or fibre, and the foot-stool covered 
with bass. 

BASSET, to crop out as a seam of coal does. Used as a noun 
it means an outcrop. 

The great limestone *' bassets out on the north bank of the Tees and 
near Frosterley.*'— George Tate, Geol. of Northum. and Durham. — Trans, 
of the Nat, Hist. Soc. of Northum. and Durhamt vol. ii., new series, p. 12. 

"The High Main bassets out in the cliffs between Cullercoats and 
Tynemouth." — Mackenzie, Hist, of Northum., 1825, vol. i., p. 79. 

" Its basset forms, in many instances, the limit of cultivated land." — 
T. Sopwith, On the Mining District, p. 4. Quoted by George Tate above. 

BASTARD, or BASTEY, applied to stone or minerals, means 
impure or nondescript. Bastard limestone, impure limestone. 
A *^ bastard sole*' (or lemon sole) is the fish lemon dab, 
Platessa microcephala, Flem, 

*• Bastard, thready whin.'*— Boriw^s and Sinkings, A.B., p. 81. ' Bastard 
whin ' is hard post or sandstone, but not so flinty as to be called ' whin.* 

"'Bastey, grey stone.* "—The same, A.B., p. 62. 
BASTARD EAGLE, the osprey. 

BASTE, to thrash soundly. Beyest [N. and S.] , Byest [T.] . 
** Aa'll gie ye sic a byestin' as ye nivver gat i' yor life." To 
brand sheep or cattle. See Beyst. 

BASTEL-HOUSE, BASSEL-HOUSE, a fortified house, such 
as is yet common on the Border. A typical example may be 
seen at Thropton, near Rothbury. The ground floor is a 
large apartment with vaulted roof. Over this are the living 



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40 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

rooms of the owner. The walls are of great thickness, 
affording its inmates protection against a marauding party. 
The Peel (or Pele) towers are castles on a small scale. 

"Towns, towers, barnekynes, paryshe churches, bastell houses burned 
and destroyed 192. Exploits done upon the Scots."— R. Welford. Hist, of 
Newc, XVI. Cent,, p. 219. 

"Whalton was probably composed of bastle-houses, similar in their 
construction to the Pele towers, though not so strong or well built ; and 
inhabited by the vassals employed in cultivating the outlying farms." — 
Rev. J. E. Elliot, Trans. Bks. Naturalists* Club, vol. vi., p. 235. 

BASTILE, the workhouse. 

BAT, a blow. " A bat & the jaa." 

** It ne'er could be brought to behaviour, 
Though it has got many a bat.'* 

The Midford Galloways Ramble. 

BAT, manner, state, condition. •* At ony bat *' — under any 
circumstances. ** If aa divvent gan this week aa'U gan the 
next, at ony bat" 

** Aa's just th* aad-dfl^; aa's just th' soA-bat; 
Thorns nowt aboot me ye may fear, lads ; 
But el wis aa*s glad, whether good time or bad, 
Just to say— aa's aboot th' SLod-bat." 

Song, Th* Aad-bal. 

BAT, a margin of land within the tide mark of floods or of the 
spring tides. 

*' Various fisheries on the south side of the Tweed between Berwick 
bridge and the sea are called Bats, such as ' Bailiffs bat,' * Davie's bat,' &c. 
Upon these fisheries ^and also upon others not thus denominated) are 
heaps of stones called bats, upon which the nets are drawn when there is 
no means of landing them in the usual way (from the bank of the river 
being steep)." — R. Weddell, Salmon Fishing in the River Tweed. — 
Archceologia ^liana, vol, iv., quarto series, p. 307. 

BATCH, a small lot of meal for family use. The hinds, when 
paid in kind by corn, &c., took these small quantities to 
the miller, who made them into batches. A bakmg of bread, 
or as much as the oven will hold at one baking is called a 
batch. 

BATE, to abate in price, to lower in amount. *'Aa winna 
bate a penny." 

BATE- WORK, in a pit, short work. 

B ATT ABLE, debateable. •* A batiable ground lying between 
two countries." — Hodgson's Northumberland, iii., 2, p. 342. See 
Debateable-lands. Compare Threap-lands. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 4I 

BATTEN, to feed, to bring up. "To batten on yon moor." 
After a confinement, all the "cronies'* who had come to assist, 
or to congratulate, were regaled with tea or spirits, according 
to taste. As they began, the cup or glass was solemnly lifted 
to the health of the father and mother, and a wish was 
expressed in the formula of "a good battening to the bairn." 

*" A good battening to your bairn,' is a health drunk at christenings." — 
Hodgson MS, 

BATTEN, the straw of two sheaves folded together. — Brockett. 

"A bundle of straw consisting of two or more sheaves." — Dr. Murray, 
New Eng. Diet. 

BATTER, a drinking bout. " He*s on the batter agyen." 

BATTERED, tired. " Aa's fair battered an' deun." 

BATTERY, an embankment. — Gloss, of Min. Terms, Newcastle, 
1852. 

BATTLE, BITTLE, to beat cloth. See Beetle. 

** A very large whinstone in the Hart is called the battlin^-sione, from its 
being used to beat or battle the lie out of the webs upon it m the bleaching 
season." — Hodgson's Northumberland, pt. 2, vol. ii., p. 12. note col. i. 

BATTLE-DOOR, a kind of barley, known also as sprat-barley. 
** Said to be so-called from the flatness of the ear." — HalliwelVs Diet. 

BATTLEDORE, the name for the old "horn book." It was 
simply a fiat board with a handle like a battledore. On the 
wide face of this a card was fastened, having ABC and other 
elementary characters upon it. To protect the card from 
the constant contact of the wooden skewer used as a pointer 
in teaching, a sheet of horn was nailed over the face. Hence 
the name "horn book." Battledore is transferred to the 
folding child's alphabet card, still for sale (1891) in book- 
sellers' shops. 

BATTOCKS, flat grounds, or " haughs," by a riverside. 

BATTY, a small cake. **Thoo shall hev a spice batty on tha 
borthday." 

BAUGH [N.]» tired out, exhausted. Compare Baff, Baff- 

ENDED. 



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42 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BAUGHLIN, reproaching, taunting. The inhabitants of 
Tynedale and Redesdale were in former days given to 
baughling, or reproaching, an adversary— daring him to fight. 
(Obs.) 

'* Bavghling at the meetings of the Scotch and English wardens, as it 
frequently led to blows, was prohibited under the penalty of a month s 
imprisonment." — S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumberland, 1835. p. i^S^noU. 

*' Any band, or promise, or hauchling, that might be made." — Laws o 
thi Marches. 

BAULK. See Baak. 

BAWBER, a salmon poacher. — Berwick. 

BAXTER, a baker. 

BAY, the imaginary enclosure or place of safety in outdoor 
games. " Thoo canna catch me, noo aa's i' the bay" 

BAZE, to alarm, to puzzle. — Brockett, See Bumbazed. 

BEADSMAN, one who offers up prayers for the welfare of 
SLTiother.—Halliweirs Diet. The Hospital of St. Mary 
Magdalene at Newcastle provides for ** three poor beadsmen.*' 
A petitioner : — 

*' Your poor orators and bedemtn, the burgesses within the commonalty 
of Gateshead."— R. Welford, Hist, of Newc., XVI. Cent., 1526, p. 94. 

BEAGLE, a beadle. 

" It. p^' for the belmans Cote and the beagle's and the piper's cots, 
£1. 13s. lod.** — Gateshead Church Books, 1633. 

" Pd. to the belman for burieing the^old beagell, 4d." — The same, 1634. 

•' Blind Willy slawly led the band, 
As beagle o* the wav, man ; 
A staff he carried in his hand, 
An* shook his heed se grey, man." 

Thomas Marshall, d. 1869, Luckeys Dream. 

BEAK, the nose, the face. 

" To the beak o' the second aw held up me fist/' — Bob Cranky* s Account 
of the Balloon, 1815. 

" We'll get penny loaves, an* drink tiv wor 6^aA."— Old song, Collier's 
Rant. 

BEAK, to warm at the fire. 

BEAKIN-FULL, full to repletion.— Brockett. See Boukin. 

BEAKS, a punishment inflicted upon the loser in a game of 
marbles, by " firing** a marble at the knuckles. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 43 

BEAK-§TICKS, BAKE-STICKS, a triangular frame of wood 
or iron, resembling a small easel, with a prop at the back, for 
holding girdle cakes in front of the fire to finish the baking, 
or sometimes to warm an old cake. 

BEAKY, having a prominent nose. 

BEAL, to roar, to bellow. — Brockett, 

BEAL, to suppurate, to gather. See Beeld. 

BEAM-BIRD, or BEE-BIRD, the spotted flycatcher— 
Musicapa grisola, Linn, 

BEANGER, anything larger than ordinary of its kind. — 
BrockeU. See Banger. 

BEANS, small coals, so-called from their size. Duff is the 
smallest coal left after screening ; peas are next in size ; beans 
next grade higher ; then nuts, — roondy coal being the largest 
in size. 

BE-AR, the pronunciation of bear. 

BEAR, barley; the original English name, in later times 
retained only in the North — hence specially applied to the 
coarse variety {Hordeum kexasiichon or tetrastichon), — wilii six 
j[or four) rows of grain in its ear, till lately chiefly cultivated 
in the North ; also distinguished as bear-barley and bigg. — 
Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. See Bigg. 

BEARDY-LOACH, the loach fish, Cobitis barbatula, Linn. 
Called also the '* Tommy Lodger." 

BEARING-DOOR, a main door in a pit which forces the air 
through an entire district. — GreenwelL 

BEAR-STONE, a husking trough for bear or barley; called 
also "creein trou.** 

BEAR-THE-BELL, to be pre-eminent. 

" Still Piper Tony bears the bell^—Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 20. 

BEAS, BEESS, BEACE, BEES, beasts. " Torn thor buss, 
lad." 

BEASTIE, diminutive of beast. 



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44 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BEASTLINS, BEASTINS, the first milk of a newly-calved 
cow. From this is sometimes made a ^^beastlinpuddin" which 
is considered a delicacy. Compare Heft, 2. 

• BEAT, to feed a fire with fuel. See Beet. 

BEAT, p. Bet, p,p, Betien, to excel, to surpass, to overcome in 
contest. " Aa'U gie ye the start an' bmt ye." " Renforth bet 
ivvorybody." "Aa wis fair betten and deun for." To go 
beyond our comprehension, to puzzle. ** It beats me what 
he's gan te de wid." 

** Of a' the plagaes a poor man meets, 
Alang life's weary way, 
There's nyen amang them a' that beats 
A rainy weshin* day." 

T. Wilson, The Wdshin' Day, 1843. 

" Hoo aa got up aloft, it wad beat me to tell." — ^James Horsley, Geordy*s 
Dream, 

BEAT, to bruise the feet with excessive walking. " A bet foot " 
is a foot bruised by walking. 

"Constant hard working horses are subject to heat or founder to their 
feet or leggs.'*— TA^ Compleat Collier, 1708, p. 34. 

A 6«/-hand. *' a hand which, from being vesicated or blistered with 
hard work, has festered.'* — GreenweU. 

BEATER, a tool for beating down stemming on a charge of 
powder for a blast in a coal pit ;. also a stone used for braying 
saifd. 

BEATMENT, a measure holding a quarter-peck. It was 
formerly in general use in the district, especially in the retail 
sale of vegetables and coals. The measure was commonly 
made of wood staves hooped, with a division so placed that 
at one end up a beatment could be meted and at the other 
half-a-beatment. Another form of the word occurs as 
beakment. At Hexham the measure was double the size of the 
Newcastle beatment ; hence the proverb — " Hexham measure, 
heaped full, an* runnin ower." 

" Aa's still sair beset. 
Coals is threepence a beatment, and nyen for te get." 

Ed. Corvan, d. 1865, The Rise in Coals. 

BEAUMONT, the name of a seam of coal. See Engine Seam. 
It obtains these names from the enterprising gentleman 
named Beaumont. 

" Master Beaumont, a gentleman of great ingenuity and rare parts, 
adventured into our mines with his thirty thousand pounds; who 
brought with him many rare engines not known then in these parts." — 
Grey*s Chorograpia, 1649. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 45 

BEAUMONTAGUE, BOMONTAGU, a mixture of tar and 
china clay, beaten up hard and used in stemming acid 
condensers and stone acid tanks and cisterns in chemical 
works. 

BEB, to act as croupier in the gambling game of " pitch and 
toss." The bebber is one who gathers in the pennies ; generally 
the one who has lost and does this to earn something to start 
the "school** again, should his employer win. 

BECAM, became, /.^ 

BECK, a small stream. This term, which is found in Danish and 
Norwegian settlements in England, occurs about sixty-three 
times in the county of Durham. Thirty-eight of these are 
within the Tees district. In Northumberland it is represented 
in the solitary case of the ** River Wansbeck," and in this it 
is questionable whether the second syllable is beck. In a.d. 
1 139 it is called Wenesjbic and Winispic; in time Henry III. 
Wanspic ; in Henry Vl. it is Wanspihe and Wanspyhe ; in 
1568, Wanspek ; and in 1604 it occurs as Wanspicke ; in Speed's 
map of 1610 it is Wanspek\ and in 1632, Waynspecke, 

BECK, to nod the head and cluck as a strutting cock does — 
" The muircock he becks in his wild mossy hame"; or a jerk 
of the head like the action of a horse with weak legs. 
"// becksr 

" The maircock's heck could I bat hear." 

Jas. Armstrong, Aid Crag, 1879. 

BECKER, a wooden dish— Nw^AwmJ^r/awi.—H alii well. See 
Bicker. 

BECK-NAILS, thin, flat nails, 2 to 5I inches long, used for 
nailing spouting for water wheels, &c. 

BECRIKE, by Christ I a profane exclamation which is often 
heard as becrikey I or crikey ! 

••Od'smarcy ! wey, marrow, 6^mA*, it's Lord 'Size I "—J. Shield, My 
Lord * Size, — Allan* s Collection, p. 158. 

BED. Such a one has " getten her bed** is the universal term 
used in speaking of a woman's being confined. 

BED, the foundation of a wall or cribbing. — Gloss, ofNewc, Min. 
Terms f 1852. 

BEDDY, in soft layers, applied to stone. **Beddy freestone" 
is thus distinguished from a compact, granular deposit. 



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46 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BEDESFOLK, the inhabitants of religious houses or alms- 
houses, who offered up prayers for the repose of the founders. 
See Beadsman. 

*< • The hospital of our Lady called West Gate Spital, within the town 
of Newcastle, was founded, as it is reported, by the inhabitants of the 
town of Newcastle/ for the purpose, amon}? other objects, of keeping 
•six beadfolks in the almshouse there.' " — Richard Welford, Hist, of Ntwc, 
in XVI. Cint., p. 2^5. 

Item: '* To the ^ii-/o/A at certain times, 5s. lod.; for twenty chalder 
of coals to the bede-folk, 17s. 4d." — The samCt p. 202. 

BEDFAST, bedridden. 

BED-GOON, bed-gown, a short loose-fitting jacket, worn by 
women in the hay-field or harvest-field. 

BE-DRITTEN. defiled with ordure.— Brockitt. 

BEDS, a children's game, generally called " hitchey-dabber." 

BEDSTICK, a stick used to straighten the bed-clothes in the 
box-beds, which used to be common in the country. 

BEDSTOCK, the "stock," or strong side timber of a bedstead. 

" An* i* the twinklen of an e*e, 
Was fairly ower the bedstock bangin*." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1827, P*- ii» v. 14. 

BEDSTOCKS, a boys' game. In this game sides are formed, 
and the lads on one side give chase to those on the other. 
When a capture is made the pursuer spits over the head of 
his prey, the captive is put into a marked-off place, and the 
capturer places his foot on a spot about two yards off. Here 
the captive shouts lustily to his side, "relieve a marrow!" 
As each is brought in, his capturer takes the place of the 
lad on guard, and one can hold several captives. But if one 
of the side that is being chased can manage to run through 
between the guard and his captives, the whole of his side are 
" relieved," and they run off. The game becomes increasingly 
difficult to the side that is " out " as further captures are made, 
because the capturers leave only one of their number on guard, 
and have thus a constant strength to pursue the diminishing 
numbers of the "out" side. This is the game known else- 
where as "Prisoner's Base." 

BEE-BAA, to lull asleep. 

<* The wind bee-bawed, aw whish'd me squeels, 
An yence mair aw was murry." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Jimmy Jontson's Whurry, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 47 

BEE-BIKE, a wild bee's nest. 

BEE-BIRD, the spotted flycatcher, Butalis grisola, Linn. 

BEEL, or BEELD, to build. 

" He beels his aan boat.'*— J. P. Robson, Harry Clasper, 1849. 

BEELD, to gather, to suppurate. When a swelling or 
gathering occurs, the part is said to beeld. A built or beelt 
hand is a swollen hand, and it is said to be hove — that is, 
raised. 

BEELD, the shelter for cattle. "The beeld side" of a house 
or fence, is that opposite to the wind or storm. Beelds for 
sheep, &c., are common on the high moors in Northumberland. 
They are circular or cross walls of earth or stone. — Hodgson 
MS. Compare Stell, Sheep-stell, Sheal, 

BEELD Y, sheltered from cold. ** Aa've gettin a beeldy place." 
BEELEY, the christian name Isabella. 
BEER, BE- AR, the pronunciation of bear. 
BEERTH, birth. 

BEES. 

" It is never considered lucky to be the sole owner of bees. A man 
and a woman, not man and wife, should be partners. If either should 
die, some one should go at midnight, tap each hive three times, and 
desire the bees to work for their new master or mistress, as the case may 
be." — Rev. J. F. Bigge, Superstitions at Stamfordham. — Trans, of Tyneside 
Naturalists' Field Club, 1860-62, vol. v., p. 91. 

BEES, the second and third persons singular of the present 
tense of the verb to be, sometimes heard in Northumberland. 
" What bees thoo deein ? " The sound is sometimes shortened 
to bis — " He bis ne use at aall." 

BEESEN, BEEZEN, blind.— Brocket. 

BEE-SKEP, a beehive — made of straw. 

BEESTLINS, BEESTINS. See Beastlins. 

BEET, the bit of a bridle. " Tyek the beets,'' said to a horse 
unwilling to admit the bits into his mouth. 



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48 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BEET, to feed a fire with fuel. This word is most applicable 
to straw, heath, fern, furze, and especially to the husk of oats 
when used for heating the girdles on which oaten cakes are 
baked. — Hodgson MS. 



'"To beet a fire.' The development of this (the chief extant) i 
the antiquity of which is shown, not merely by the O.S. /yr betOH^ but by 
its existence in the other Teutonic languages (compare Dutch vuur boeten^ 
Low German fkr bdten, etc.). is somewhat obscure, n'om the fact that in the 
earliest instances it appears to mean, not * to mend a firty but as in 
modem Dutch, *to make^ kindU, put on a fire.' Perhaps this is to be 
explained by the primitive conditions (which prevailed more or less till 
the days of phosphorus matches), according to which fire was not 
generated anew each time it was required, but was usually propagated by 
a ' glede ' from an existing fire, often carried and kept alive lor days 
(compare Genesis xxii., 6), which was surrounded with combustibles, 
and 'beeted* into a blaze, when a fire was required." — Dr. Murray, New 
Eng. Diet, 

BEET-HAMMER, a mason's hammer, having a flat face at 
one end and a point at the other. 

BEETLE, BITTLE, an instrument used for beating in the 
washing of clothes ; a potato masher. See Battle. 

BEET-NEED, a resource in extremity. " We'll not have to 
use it except as a beet-need.^' 

BEFAA, befal. 

BEGGAR, a term of address to a familiar. " Where's the 
little beggar gan te ?" 

" The Skipper saw'd first, and he gov a greet shout, 
How, beggar t man, Dick, here's a grunstone sdaoat." 

W. Armstrong, d. 1883-4, Floatin* Grunstan. 

BEGOCK, BEGOX, an exclamation meaning by Gox, or by 
God. The word in other combinations is heard as Cocks. 
See Exclamations. 

*' Cock, a vulgar corruption, or purposed disguise of the name of God, 
in favour of pious ears, which in early times were not yet used to the 
profanation of it. Hence by cock, by cock and pie, and such softened oaths. 
We find also cock's passion, coch*s body, and other allusions to the Saviour, 
or his body, as supposed to exist in the Host ; and when that belief was 
discarded, the expression still remained in use. ' By cocke they are to 
blame." — Hamlet, iv. 5. ' By cock and pye: Justice Shallow's famous 
oath, adds the pie, or sacred book of offices, to the former name." — 
Nan's Gloss. 

'* Whei clavers biv the chimlay reek 
Begox, it's all a homey." 

J. Thompson, d. i8i6, Jimmy Joneson's W hurry. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 49 

BEGUED, began. 

" But suddenly begued a feast, 
And after that begued a fray." 

Jos. Rumney, " Echy*s Mare.** 

BelVs Rhymes, 1812. 

BEHINT, behind, but oftener Ahint. 

** Wi' Sir Tommy before and the sailors behint** 

Song, " When Sir Tommy made an Oddfellow" 

Marshall* s Collection, 1823, p. 12. 

BELAA, BELAW, below, or in the pit. 

" Wor skipper was tyekin his pipe doon belaw.** — E. Corvan, d. 1865. 
Keel on Fire. 

" When they're duen wi* roads belaw. 
May they find that to heaven.'* 

T. Wilson, Oiling of Dicky s Wig, 1826, v. 67. 

BELCH, a rapid discharge of gas in a pit. — Brockett. 

BELDE, to build ; p.t. beldeet. 

*'God presarve Wmfroira Erengton helldete this brege of lyme and 
stone, 1581." — Inscription on LinneVs Bridge, Dilston. 

BELIKE, perhaps. •* Ye'll be gannin* hyem noo belike/" 

*' Things that I know not of belike to thee are dear.'* 

Wordsworth, Pet Lamb. 

BELIKELY, likely. An emphatic use of the word, ** Are ye 
gannin' ? " " Not belikefyr 

BELIVE, presently. "Aa'U be there belive:* The f is long. 
See Belyve. 

BELK, to belch. 

"To bealke or breake wynde oute of the stomake." Elyot, word 
Enuto.'—HalliwelVs Diet. 

BELLASES, bellows. 

BELL-DUCK, the coot. Holy Island. 

BELL-PIT, a pit sunk where the mine lies very near the 
surface. It is worked away in every direction round the 
bottom of the shaft like a bell. — GreenweU. 

BELL-POOT, the coot, Fulica atra^ Linn. Also called Bell- 
duck and Bald-coot. 

BELLUM, a blast. ^'Turning the corner, I met a great bcUum 
of wind." [Long Framlington.] 

D 



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50 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BELLY, to bulge outward. 

BELL YB AND, a girth to secure a cart saddle. 

BELLYFLAPPER, a blow on the stomach given by falling 
flat on the water in diving. 

BELLY-FLAUTS, the fashion of mounting a bare-backed 
horse. "He gat on helly-flautsy 

BELLYFULL, a common term for a repletion of anything. 
"Ye'll get a belly full on him afore he's deun taakin*, noo." 

'* Here an awd wife on a stuil, 

And there an awd man on a chair, 
Enjoyin' all a bellyfull 
Of laughin', at ma stories rare/' 

T. Wilson, PitiMn*s Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 102. 

BELLY-RIM, the lower part of the abdomen, where the basin 
of the pelvis is surrounded at its "riw," with the sack 
containing the bowels. *' He*s brust his belly-rim,'* 

"The rim of the belly is said to be broken when its muscles are 
lacerated or violently sprained. Rim means the circumference of any 
round thing." — Hodgson MS. 

BELLY-STEND, a stick used by butchers to keep open the 
belly when they are taking the inside out of an animal. 

BELLY-TIMMER, food. 

*' Scott puts this word into the mouth of a distinguished euphuist.*' — 
HalliwelVs Diet. 

*' This was the kind o' beUy-timmer, 
For myekin pitmen Strang and tuiff." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. iii., v. 3. 

BELL Y-W ARK, the belly-ache, the cholic. 
BELT, built, p.p. See Belde. 

BELYVE, speedily, soon, in a short time. — Hodgson MS. 

'* To make them all merry belyve.** 

Song, The Hare Skin. 

" Aboot the bush, Willy, aboot the beehive 
Aboot the bush, Willy, I'll meet thee belyve.'* 

Song. Aboot the Bush, Willy. 

BEN, in, into. **Come ben the hoose." See But-an-ben. 

*' When doors stand open dogs come ben." — J oco-Serious Discourse, i686. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 5I 

BEND-AWAY or BEND-UP, a signal in a pit, given to raise 
up, or set away. ^^ Bend-off ! '* — ^lift gently. 

"Bend, to strain, brace, tighten, wind up, bring into tension (like a 
strung bow or wound up harquebus)/' — Dr. Murray, Bend, v. 3, New 
Eng. Diet. 

*** Bend-up,' or * Bend-up a bit I* an order given by the person in charge 
to raise the cage slowly, so that it may be instantly stopped on the order 
* Hold 1 ' being f^yen." -^reenwell. 

BEND-LEATHER, the leather of a *«bend,*' that is, the 
thickest and stoutest kind of leather (from the back and 
flanks), used for soles of boots and shoes ; sole leather. — 
Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet, Bendy-leather applied to ice in a 
half-thawed condition. In that state it is elastic and will bear 
a considerable weight without breaking-in. Children run or 
slide over it repeating the following doggerel couplet : — 

•• Bendy-leather's good to beer, 
Tyek a heart an' nivver fear." 

BENNEL [N.], a long reedy grass {Arundo phtagmitis^ L.) 
growing in stagnant rivers or burns. "Green as a bennel" 
Bennels were layers of this reed woven together and stretched 
below the rafters of cottages to serve as a ceiling. 

BENSE, a cow stall. 

BENSEL, to bang or beat.— iJa/s Gloss. 

BENT, a coarse kind of grass, usually growing on wet land, or 
on sand hills upon the sea shore ; hence ** the Bents,*' a name for 
grassy sand dunes. Under the generic name of Bent we have 
^^ff^grass, Agrostis vulgaris; the Bent, Ammopkila arundinacea. 
The Carex arenaria of the coast is called Sea-6^n/. Juncus 
squarrosus is called Rose-bent and Stool-6^»^, and the large 
tough patches formed by it are called Benty-knois. The 
Molinia cosrulea is called Broad-6^n/ and Flying-6^ff^ Nardus 
stricta is called V<J'\tt-hent and Black-^^n^. 

" Lay the bent to the bonny broom." — Old song. 

** ' The Bent ' is used for ' a place covered with grass, as opposed to 
a wood ; a bare field, a grassy plain, unenclosed pasture-land, a heath.*" — 
Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet, 

** Bomen bickarte uppone the bent 
With ther browd arars cleare." 

*' Yet bydys the Yerle Doglas uppon the bent.** 

Chevy Chase, 1500. 

'*Half the island — Lindisfame — is now under cultivation; the rest is 
covered with sand — through which the long, thick, wiry bent shoots up 
luxuriantly.**— Rev. Provost Consitt, Life ojfSt. Cuthbert, 1887, p. 50. 



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52 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BEO, a not uncommon pronunciation of be or bee in 
Northumberland. " Aa'U beo there the morn." 

BERRY, to thresh by flail. ''He's been berryin' aa the day/' 
The e has the old sound of a — and the word is spoken Barry, 
See Barry. 

"Hence binier, or thresher, and the berrying-steaA, the threshing 
floor."— i?fl>'s Gloss. 

BERRY-BROWN, nut-brown ale. 

" Had I but kenn'd aw, when I was in the town, 
I'ad spent t'other groat on the brisk berry-brown, 

JocoSerious Discourst, 1686, p. 3. 

The town here referred to is Newcastle, which was at one 
time so famous for its nut-brown beer as to inspire the poet 
Cunningham to write verses in its praise. 

BERTHY, rich, fruitful ; applied to land. 

BERWICK SAUCE, the water in which a salmon has been 
boiled, served up with the fish as sauce. See Dover. 

BESEEK, to beseech. 

BESSY, a character taken by one in a company of sword 
dancers at Christmas. One of the men is absurdly dressed 
up in women's clothes, and carries round the hat whilst the 
performance proceeds. 

*' Wor Mall cam heym the t*other neet 
Dres't like a ' Bessie '—sic a seet." 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Wor Mally Turned Bloomer. 

BESTED, overcome in a struggle. We do not say that a man 
has been " worsted," but ** bested " ; or we say " he bested 
his marrow at the job." ** Jack bested Tom." " Tom was bested 
by Jack." 

BET, beaten, surpassed. 

•• Bet by nyen.** — T. Wilson, Pitman* s Pay^ pt. iii., v. 123. 
*' His marrow declar*d he was bet** — Song, The Masquerade. 
" There's native bards in yon town, 
For wit and humour seldom bet.** 

W. Watson, •• Thum/ing Luck.** 

Bards of the Tyne^ 1849, p. in. 

BET, bruised by heavy walking. " He canna gan se fast ; he 
hes a bet foot.'* 

BETTER-END, a majority. " The better-end o* Catton canna 
get thor brikfasts till the hens lays." This is a joke at the 
expense of the good folks of Catton. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 53 

BETTERMER, superior, better. " Aa seed him last neet, an 
thowt he leuk'd iv a bettermer way." 

•• The shape an air o' yen 
O' raither betttrmer condition." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 4. 

BETTERMOST, superlative form of the above. ** Aa think 
ye've getten the bettermost yen." 

BETTERNESS, superior, eminent. 
" A betterness kind of body." — Brockett. 

BETWATTLED, confounded, overpowered, stupefied, 
infatuated. — Brockett. 

BEVEL, aslant, aslope, not straight ; as ** a bevel-eye" an eye 
with a cast oc slanting look. 

BEYEN [S.] , BYEN [T.] , a bone. 

" Aw toil maw byens.'* — T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, ed. 1872, p. 10. 

BEYETH [S.] , BYETH [T.] , both. 

BEYST, BE-UST, a branding iron. See Byest. 

BEYST, to mark cattle or sheep. 

BEYUK [S.], BYUK [T.], a book. This is generally spelt 
buik, 

BEYUL, BYUL, BOOL, a bowl, a smooth spherical stone 
used in bowling. 

BEYUN [S.] , BYUN [T.] , above, beyond. Abbreviated form 
of abeyun or aboon. ** It's byun ten 'ear sin he left." 

BEYUT, to boot ; anything given in addition to make up the 
value in a case of barter. For instance, in bartering horses, 
the man with the inferior one will say, ** Aa'll gie ye five pund 
te beyut.'* That is, he gets the horse he wishes to purchase 
by giving his own in exchange, and five pounds added {te beyut). 
The word is sounded as beyut in S. Northumberland, and as 
iyut in Tyneside. In tenancy, the added right to take hay, 
firing, etc., from the waste. 

" 1530, August 4, Warkworth Castle. — Letters patent of Henry, Earl 
of Northumberland, to Carmelite Friars at Hulne, giving manse there 
with 20 marks annually, with the fishery, * and housebote, haybote. fire- 
bote," &c." — Proceedings of Newcastle Society of Antiquaries, vol. iii., p. 184. 



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54 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BEYUT (be-yui) [S.], BYUT [T.], a boot. 
" Luik'd amang the butts and shoes." 

Song, The Pitman's RamhU. 

BI, by. The t is pronounced very short, as in hit. Bi is used 
before a consonant, as, "B» this and bi that." When a 
vowel follows, Biv is used, as, " It wis deun hiv a chep i' 
Gyetside." Or occasionally the euphonious Bin occurs before 
a vowel, as in the sentence, " To be bet bin a bit tape-worm 
iv a chep." 

BI HIS SEL, distracted, lunatic. "The man's fairly hi his 
sel" " Past his sel " is the commoner form. 

BIBBER, to tremble to shake. See Bivver. 

BICKER, "a small wooden dish, or vessel, made of staves and 
hoops like a tub.*' — Hodgson MS. A tumbler glass. This 
word seems to be the Northern name for beaker. Compare 
Bowie. 

" Oar friend Bowrie is still ahle to bend a bicker. Long may he live to 
teem a cog." — Dr, Charlton^ North Tynedale. 

** Scotch form of beaker. Formerly, a drinking cup of any material ; 
in modem Scotch applied also to vessels made of wooden staves for 
holding porridge, &c."— Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet, 

BICKER, to skirmish, exchange blows ; to fight. 

*' Said especially of archers and slingers before the battle was 
joined.'* — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

"Bomen bickarte nppone the bent."— CA^vy Chase. 

♦•At every such bickering some of them spent their lives, yet by such 
meaning, like pretty men, they defended their country." — Bishop Ridley 
to Latimer, 1555. 

BICK-IRON, a light anvil (originally a two-horned anvil — 
hicornia), corruption from bickem — ** altered first in form, and 
then in sense, by popular etymology." — Dr. Murray, New 
Eng. Diet. 

BID, BIDDEN, p.t. and p.p. of hide, to stay, to remain, to 
abide. ** He had bidden ower lang i' the watter when he was 
oot fishin." See Bide. 

BID, to invite, to command. The peculiar usage of this word 
is that it is only descriptive of an invitation to which there is 
no refusal. Such ceremonies as a wedding or a funeral were 
both of them festivals which admitted of no excuse. Hence 
the command which the word conveys. "Aa's bid tiv aad 
Anty's funeral the morn" {p.t. had, p.p. boden). "He was 
boden ti gan." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 55 

BID, BEDE, to pray. Hence a hedes-man, one that prays for 
others; and those little globules with which they number 
their prayers are called hedes, — Ray. 

BIDDABLE, obedient. It is alike applied in describing an 
obedient child, or horse, or dog. ** It's that biddable^ leuk ye, 
ye can de owt wi'd." 

BIDDERS, the friends who went round to invite their neigh- 
bours to a funeral. The custom is now nearly disused. 

** The friends of the deceased, as well as the neighbours, are generally 
invited to the funeral by bidders dressed in black silk scarfs." — Mackenzie, 
Hist, of Northumb., 1825, vol. i., p. 206. 

BIDDY, a louse. 

BIDDY, Bridget ; hence an Irishwoman, from the common 
Irish Christian name of Bridget. 

BIDE, to endure, to stand, to abide, to wait. " Aa canna bide 
yon chep.** "It'll not bide handlin.*' "It'll bide wor time, 
onyway.*' ^^Bide a bit.** In past tense, bid. "Weii(^at 
hyem." Past part., ^^». ^^ He's bidden \3ing.*' Bedden is 
sometimes heard. "Ye should ha' bedden till aa cam.'* 

"Substantials that wad bide some cuttio."— T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 
1829, pt. iii., V. 108. 

BIELD, a shelter, that is, a place builded. See Beeld, 2. 

BIG, BYG, to build. See Biggin. 

BIG, important, swollen with pride, elated ; as big bug^ a 
consequential person. In the Pricke of Conscience occurs the 
passage : — 

" Now er we bigg, now er we bare, 
Now er we hale, now seke and sare." 

BIGG, barley. See Bear. 

" More particularly that variety which has four rows of grain on each 
e^xr—Hodgson MS. 

"The four-rowed barley, an inferior but hardier variety of the six- 
rowed or winter barley (Hordeum hexastichonV of rapid growth, and suited 
to inferior soils and more northern latituaes. {Barley is generic ; bear 
includes the six-rowed and four-rowed kinds ; higg, the four -rowed only. 
But bear interchanges in local use, now with barley, now with bigg)." — 
Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

"Good Bf^-malt is to be Sold, at 2s 6d., per Bushel!, by Robeit 
Sorsbie, Newc, &c." — Advt. in Newcastle Courant, Aug. 29th, 171 3. 

*' The word survives in the street name of Bigg Market, in Newcastle, 
which is anciently called 'the Bere market.' " — R. Welford, Hist, of Newc, 
XVLCent.,p.2ii, 



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56 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BIGGEN, to recover after lying in. 

"I wish you a good bigening,** that is. a good getting up again after 
lying in. — Rafs Gloss. 

BIGGIN, a building. Newbiggin is a common place-name in 
Northumberland. Biggin in a pit is a built-up pillar of stone, 
&c., for support to a roof. *^ Biggin the gob" means building 
a pack in a worked-out place in a pit. 

" Lay him abint the biggin.'* — Surtees, Ballad of FtaihtrsUmtkani^h. 

BIKE, a bee's nest. See Byke. 

BILDER, a large wooden mallet, with a long handle, used in 
husbandry for breaking clods. — Bvochett, 

BILDERT, a term of contempt. 
"Ye little bildert:'-^Brockett. 

BILE, a boil. 

** It is found in the early editions of Shakspeare, and in most early 
vmiers.^'—Halliwell's Diet. 

BILL, a large headless nail used for boot heels. Compare 
Sparbill. 

BILL, to keep account. 

" Then comes the care 
To find that all is rightly bilVd." 

Thos. Wilson, Pitman* s Pay, 1826, ed. 1872, p. 3. 

BILL, the pit pay-sheet. 

** Eight or a dozen men's earnings are put into one bill, as they call it/' — 
Thos. Wilson, note to foregoing. 

BILL-DAY, the day on which the viewer examines the colliery 
account. 

BILLET-HEAD, a cleat by which a keel is moored when 
lying still in the river. 

BILLIE, BILLY, fellow, companion, comrade, mate. ** Ah, 
ye silly billy,'' is a very common phrase. See Bully. 

" It has been compared with Bully and German buhle, but to little 
purpose." — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

"And now, dear Billy, this is right." ('* Billy, brother," in margin.) — 
JocO'Serious Discourse^ Newcastle, 1686, p. 62. 

*' Your son's a lad, and he's but bad, 
And billie to my son he canna be." 

The Bewick and the Graeme, 1750. 
*' Now, Jock, my billie, quo' all the three. 
The day is corned thou was to dee." 

jfock 0' the Syde. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 57 

BILL-KNIFE, a cleaver. An indispensable instrument in a 
farm-house. It has probably retained its name from being 
similar in shape to the ancient bill-knife. 

BIN, by. Bif biv, bin, are used interchangeably in the dialect, 
as euphony suggests. See Bi. 

BIN, used for au in the sentence **Hoo bin ye the day?" 
and in an imperative sense in "Shyem ^*» ve," that is, shame 
be to you. It is used also in anger, as ''An, bin ye!'* a mild 
form of curse, like "Sink ye!" or "Sink yor impittence !** but 
in this we have probably an obscure abbreviation. 

BIN, BIND (pronounced with short f, as in wind), to bind, to 
apprentice; to engage by agreement; past, bund, "He wis 
nowther to had nor to bin" you could neither hold nor bind 
him. 

BINDIN, the pitman's hiring or engagement. Previous to 1884, 

the bindin was for a year, but after that time the engagement 

was on the basis of monthly notice of the termination of the 

agreement. Keelmen also made an annual bindin with the 

^ coal fitters. 

BINDIN-MONEY, earnest money given to a collier on being 
bound, formerly a considerable bonus, but now reduced to 
2s. 6d. or 3s. — Brockett, 3rd ed., 1846. 

BING, a heap of grain, a wooden receptacle, a bin. "The com 
bing;' "The hay bing,'' &c. 

BING, a mieasure of lead ore — 8 cwts. 

** To Mr. Fenwick, of Morpeth, for every 7th bing in Sattling — stones 
groove, /106 19s. T lid."— Hodgson's Northumberland^ iii., 2, p. 363. 

BING-HOLE, a hole through which lead ore is thrown. 

BING-STEED, the place where lead ore is laid ready for 
smelting. 

BINK, BENK, a shelf, particularly a long fiat slab of stone 
fixed to a wall, used either as a seat or as a shelf. — Dr. Murray, 
(Sink, 3), NewEng. Diet. On shipboard, a bunk is the equivalent 
of the word. 

"According to Kennett, the bink of a coal pit is 'the subterraneous 
vault in a mine.' "—HalliweWs Diet. 

BINOO, by this time. " Aa thowt he'd been here binoo.'' Not 
to be confounded m{hyenoo = enough* 



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58 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BIRD'S-EYES, the germander speedwell, Veronica chamaedrys. 
Bird's-eye is also one of the names of the Geranium Robertianumj 
the Herb Robert, or " Fox," or " Wild-geranium," as it is 
sometimes called. 

BIRK, BRICK, the birch tree ; BIRKEN, birch. Birk-hnzzom 
is a birch besom. 

••They made a bier of the hirken boughs." — R. Surtees, Barthram*s 
Dirge. 
"The bifk tree grows aboon his grave.** — The same. 
" They hunted high, they hunted low, 
By heathery hill and birken shaw." 

The Death of Parcy Reed. 

BIRKIE, a brisk, active, energetic person: not a term of 
opprobrium. 

BIRL, BIR-REL, to make a noise, like the rapid turning of a 
wheel. Probably from the sound. — Brockett, Hurl has the 
same meaning, and the two words probably give the 
representative sound of hurly-burly^ or in Northumberland 
horley-horley. 

BIRR, to emit a whirring noise; to move rapidly with such#a 
noise. — Dr. Murray, New Eng, Diet, 

BIRSE, a bristle or strong hair twisted on to the wax thread 
used in sewing leather. A three-cornered chisel for squaring 
out mortice holes. "To set up their btrses'* is to assume a 
hostile attitude. 

BIRSEL, to crackle in cooking. See Brizzle. " Well birselled,"' 
well dried by the sim or scorched by iire. 

BISHEL, a bushel. 

BISHOP, to burn food in cooking by allowing it to adhere to 
the pan. 

•' When a dumpling, hasty-pudding, potatoes, &c., have sitten on to the 
bottom of the pan in which they are boiled, they are said to be bishopped, 
a punning translation of the word confirmatus, A person who is now said 
to be confirmed, in the ecclesiastical meaning of the word, was in former 
times said to be bishopped ; in Latin, confirmatus, which is also expressive 
of a dumpling's adhering to the bottom of a pan."(!) — S. Oliver, Rambles 
in Northumberland, 1835, p. 131 — note. 

" Bishop, 5/A, To let milk, &c., bum while cooking. In allusion to the 
proverb, 'The bishop has put his foot into it.' [" 1536, *Tindale Worhs,^ 
166 (T). If the porage be burned to, or the meate over rested, we say 
the bishop hath put his foote in the potte, or the bishop hath played the 
cooke, because the bishops bum who they lust and whosoever aispleaseth 
them."] "—Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 59 

BISHOP. In making glue it is poured into trays to cool, then 
laid on a table, where it is cut with an instrument, not unlike 
a bow, having a brass wire as its string, into three pieces. 
When the women by mistake cut only two, that which is 
double the size is called a bishop, and doomed to be melted 
over again. — Impartial Hist, of Newc,, 1801. 

BISON. See Bizen. 

BIT. I. Small; lovingly used for diminutive or homely things. 
•« An innocent bit lass." " Aa did what bit thing aa could for 
him." " Aa waddent he' minded, but, ye see, aa had me bit 
better things on." 

•• She cloots the bits o' bairns aboot."— T. Wilson, The IVeshin Day, 
1843. 

•• Aa gat the hits o' bairns to bed."— T. Wilson, Market Day, 1854. 

" She tells me all her bits o* news." — Pitman* s Pay, 1826. p. 14. 

2. Short. '*AW twine." 

"Yen neet he gat a hit waak tiv hisseV—Geordys Last, 1878, p. 9. 

" Set thine hand to this bit writing." — Joco-Serious Discourse, Newcastle 
1686, p. 62. 

3. A short time. 

•' Ses aa, had on a hit:*— His Other Eye, 1880, p. 2. 

BIT AN' BRAT, food and clothing. 

" Maw canny bairns luik pale and wan, 
Their bits and brats are varry scant." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, ed. 1872, p. 11. 

BITCH, to spoil a piece of work. Ye've bitched the hyel job." 
Or, as a substantive, *' Ye've myed a bitch on't.'* 

BITCH, BECHE, an instrument made of iron, and having 
some resemblance to the extinguisher of a candle, used for 
extracting bore-rods when they break. 

BITCH-AND-PUPS, a mason's hammer used for "scabbling" 
stones, having one chisel inserted at each end of its face. 

BITCH-NAIL, a holding-down nail for tram-plates, &c., 
having the point faced in the same line as the head, as 
distinguished from a dog-nail, or dog, which has a chisel 
point faced at right angles to the hook-shaped head. 

BITTERSWEET, the woody nightshade, Solanum dulcamara; 
called also Puzzen Barry. 



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6o NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BITTLE, to maul, to beetle. " Aa feel as if aa'd been btUUd 
aa ower.'* Said on feeling stiff and sore all over, as if the 
sensation were that of having been beaten with a stick. 
Singles, or handfiils of corn gathered by gleaners, are carried 
home and afterwards bittUd. See Battle. 

BITTLE, a beetle, or wooden beater for beating flax or linen 
clothes. " As blind as a Utile" a very common expression. 
See Beetle. 

BITTOCK, a little bit. 

" This end was just twa inches o're, 
And that was sax and hittock more." 

G, Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, Newcastle, 1686, p. 60. 

BIV, by. It is used before a vowel only, or before a silent 
aspirate, as " Bet biv a mile.** ** He ken*d him biv his {biv ees) 
hat.** ** He steud bi the horse and held him bi the heed, ana 
he saa his fyece biv a lamp.** See Bi and Bin. 

BIVVER, to tremble, to vibrate, to quake with fear. ** It's aa 
iv a biwer.'' Dother has the same meaning. ** He wis aal iv 
Sidothr.'* ''GsLnnindotherinahootr '' A dotherin {eyid" See 
Bibber. 

•• BivE, verb, obsolete— to shake, tremble."— Dr. Murray, NewEng. Diet. 

BIZEN, BISON, BYSEN, a show, a spectacle of disgrace. 
" A holy bizen. A very conspicuous thing, or an overdressed 
person. •• She's that aressed, she's a fair bizen*' 

" And was I not a very wise one 
To gang and make my-sel' a by-xon ?*' 

G. Stuart, Jfoco-Serious Discourse, Newcastle, 1686. 
The writer appends a note, " Query ? By song--a thing to be wondered at. " 

A common menace they (the Sandgate women) use to each other is : — 
" 111 make a Ao/y byson of you." — Brand, Pop. Antiquities, 1777, p. 185, note. 

•• The reckoning, my soul ! was a bizonT'^T. Thompson, d. 1816, Canny 
Newcastle. 

" ' But that's not a, for Mr. Smith 
Teird me the candles a' were risin 1 ' 
' Dear me,' ses aw, * Sir, what's that with ? 
It's by ma truly quite a byson.* 
* It is the plaguey war, I fear.* 
' Bliss me,' ses aw, • that's varry queer, 
De they fight now wi' candle-leet ?' " 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt- i" • v. 31. 

"A bison sight, on Monday night, 
The worst that ere you saw." 

**Town Clerk's Safety Valve.'' 

Bards the Tyne, 1849, p. 503. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 6l 

BIZZ, to buzz ; to fuss about, or go with a disturbing noise. 
"Gannin bizzin aboot." "What's the feyul bizzin aboot there 
for?" 

BIZZER, a circular piece of metal from two to three inches 
diameter, notched round the edge, with two holes near the 
centre. A double cord is passed through them, and the 
alternate twisting and untwisting when pulled causes a 
buzzing noise. This toy is usually made of a piece of 
tinplate. 

BLAA, breath. " Get yor i/aa," to take your rest for an interval 
during hard exertion. 

BLAA, to blow. "It's eneuf to blaa ye off yor feet/' " He blaa'd 
the leet oot." " The wind's blaan'd off." 

BLAA-MAA-LUG, a fleechin, noisy fellow. 

BLAAN-MEAT, meat in which a "blow-fly" has deposited its 
eggs. 

BLAAN-MILK, skimmed milk, that is, milk from which the 
cream has been taken, or blown off. 

BLAA-OOT, a drinking bout. A man drank two quarts of 
beer at a public-house, and, on retiring, observed to the 
landlord, " That's good beer, mistor ; when aa come back, 
aa'U hev a reg'lar blaa-oot,'* 

*' The upshot was a gaudy-day, 
A grand blaw-oot wi' Grundy's yell." 

Thomas Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 96. 

BLAB, to talk loosely, to blaze abroad. 

" Hout, hinny. hand th' blabbing jslw.'* 

Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i., v. 70. 

BLABBER, same as Blab ; not to be confounded with 
" blubber," but often used as Blether, which see. '* He'll 
blabber an taak aall neet, if ye'U oney lissen tiv him." 

BLABBER, to cry, to blubber. 

BLACK ; in mining, any dark coloured stratum — not 
necessarily black, as ^^Bkck Bandstone." 

BLACK-A-VIS'D, dark in complexion, black visaged. — 
Brockett. 



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62 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BLACK - BO W- WO WERS, BLACK - BOW - WOW - ORTS, 
BLACK-BERRIES, brambleberries— the fruit of the Rulms 
frucHcosus. See Bummbl-kite. 

BLACK BUNTING, the reed bunting, Cinchramus schaniclus, 
Linn. 

BLACK-CAPS, the field woodrush, Luzula campestris; called 
also Peeuweep Grass and Cuckoo Grass. 

BLACK COCK, the black grouse. See Brown Hen or 
Black Game. 

BLACK COLE HEAD, the cole titmouse, Parusater; called 
also Cole Head and Cole Tit. 

BLACK-DAMP, stythe, carbonic acid gas. 

BLACK-DIAMONDS, coals. 

** The bonny black-diamonds gaun down i' the keels. 
To warm a' the starved t)odies i' Lunnen.** 

T. Wilson, Stanzas on a Line of Intendid Road, 1825. 

BLACK DIVER, BLACK DUCK, the scoter, Oidemia nigra. 

BLACKEY, a blackamoor. 

" An' to show them we deal wi* Newcasael, 
Twee Blackeys sal mense the dor cheek." 

W. Midford's Collection, Pitman's Courtship, x8i8. 

BLACKEY, the blackbird, Turdus merula. 

BLACK-FASTING, rigid, severe {aiSting.—Brocketi. 

BLACK-GOB, a term of contempt. 

In the books of the Bricklayers* Company of Newcastle, an entry of 
July 29, 1812, reads :—" Thomas Hewson complains against Joseph 
Galloway for calling him Black Gob,*' 

The reference may be to one wearing a moustache. Beards 
and moustaches were, before the year 1851, looked upon with 
great contempt. 

BLACK GOOSE, the brent goose, Bernicla brenta ; called 
also Ware Goose. 

BLACK-HEADED LADDIES, the bulrush, Typha latifolia. 

BLACK-JACK, the colesay ; often called Rock Salmon by 
fishermen. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 63 

BLACK-JACK, blende, or sulphuret of zinc. 

BLACK-MAIL, a tribute formerly exacted from farmers and 
small owners in the Border Counties of England and 
Scotland, and along the Highland border, by freebooting 
chiefs, in return for protection or immunity from plunder. 
[From mail, rent, tribute.] — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Did. 
Black-mail, it is said, was levied in Rothbury and Redesdale, 
in Northumberland, as late as 1720. Compare Saufby- 

MONEY. 

BLACK-MARTIN, the swift, Cypselus apus ; called also the 
Screamer, 

BLACK MONDAY, the first day of going to school after ihe 
vacation ; so denominated, no doubt, from the Black Monday 
recorded in our history; for which see Stowe. The day 
following is called Bloody Tuesday. — Brockett. 

BLACK-NEB, the carrion crow, Corvus corone, Linn, 

BLACK-POW-HEED, the blackcap, Sylvia atricapilla. 

BLACKSMITH. Blacksmiths will nqt light their fires on 
Good Friday. If necessity compels them to do anything in 
the shop, they will not bring fire in, but will make it by 
striking a piece of iron until it becomes red hot. — Rev. J. 
F. Bigge, Superstitions of Stamfordham, — Transactions Tyneside 
Naturalists' Field Cluh^ 1860-62, vol. v., p. 92. 

BLACKSMITH-OF-KIND is a blacksmith the seventh in 
descent of a family of smiths. The Rev. John Hodgson 
describes a curious superstition : — 

" If a child be ill» seven men, whose fathers, grandfathers, and great- 
grandfathers have been blacksmiths, collect in a circle, at the centre of 
which the indisposed child is laid upon an anvil, and the circle wave 
their hammers over its head, and utter with great force the stroke-groan 
* heghS If the child be terrified, the symptom is favourable ; if it be 
regardless of their menaces, life is supposed to be in its socket. To 
secure the charm each smith has 6d., ale, and bread and cheese." — 
Hodgson MS. 

The charm has been worked with one smith only, who is a 
blacksmith-of-kind. See Heart-grown. 

BLADDERY, having air bubbles enclosed. Slag from a 
furnace, full of little air cells, is said to be bladdery. 



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64 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BLADE, a keen, sharp, or smart man. ** He's a knaain 
blade" " A bonny blade ye are.'* 

'* While strolling down sweet Sandgate Street, 
A man-o'- war's blade I chanced to meet." 

Old Song, Till the Tide Comes In. 

*' That blade for my siller, he*s £ast in the heft." 

JocoSerious Discourse, 1686. 

BLAE, of a dark colour between black and blue ; blackish 
blue ; of the colour of the blae-berry. Applied to the complexion 
or colour of the human body, as affected by cold or contusion ; 
livid. Hence black and blae, now altered to black and blue. — 
Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. See Blee. 

BLAE-BERRY, the bilberry or whortleberry, Vaccinium 
myrtillus. See Blea-berry. 

BLAEWING, BLEEWING, a favourite artificial fly, used 
by anglers on North-country streams. 

BLAGAIRD, to blackguard ; a blackguard. 

BLAKE, yellow, of a golden colour ; spoken of butter, cheese, 
&c. Hence the yellow bunting — emberiza citrinella — is, in some 
places, called a blakeling. A wound is said to be blaktning 
when it puts on an appearance of healing. — Brockett. 

BLAKE, cold, exposed, bleak. 

*'B\ake\^vf,**^Northumberland.— Brockett. 

BLARE, to cry, to lament ; to shout loudly. 

" A blairin coo seun forgets hor calf." — Proverb. 

" At what he said aw could hae blaired.**'-T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 
1829, pt. iii., V. 43, 

*' Frae the Point roand the Girt, a' the time sailing slow, 
Each bullie kept bawlin, ' The Empty Kite, ho 1 ' 
But their blairin was vain, for ne Empty Kite there, 
Though they blair*d till their kites were byeth empty and sair." 

Robert Gilchrist. Shipper's Erudition^ 1824. 

BLARE, a weeping cry, a loud shout. 

*• It answered wiv a groanin blair."—], P, Robson, d. 1870, Hamlick, 
Prince 0* Denton. 

BLARE, a paste made of tar mixed with hair, used for 
caulking the seams of keels and boats. 

BLARIN, roaring loud, applied to peevish children and vulgar 
drunken noise. — Hodgson MS. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 65 

BLASH, to scatter water or puddle. " He was hlashed fre heed 
to toe." 

BLASH, a downpour of rain. 

BLASHCANTER, BLASHMENT, any weak and diluting 
liquor. — Brockctt. 

BLASHY, watery, clarty ; hence thin, poor stuflF. 

" Their streets are like wors— brave and blashy ! "— T, Thompson, Canny 
NtwcastU. — MarshaWs Collection, 1823. 

" To get blawn out wi* hlashy tea/'—T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1829, 
pt. iii., V. 107. 

•• Poor blashy yell."— T, Wilson, Stanzas on New Line of Road, 

BLAST, an explosion in a pit. 

•• There were about 30 persons, young and old, slain by a Was/."— J. C, 
Compieat Collier, 1708, p. 45. 

" The fiery blast cuts short wor lives. 

And steeps wor hyems in deep distress ; 
Myeks widows o' wor canny wives, 
And a' wor bairns leave taitherless." 

T. Wilson, The Pitman*s Pay, p. 32. 

BLAST, is applied to smoking. 

" They trudged along, got home at last, 
And found old Goody at her blast.** 

Edward Chicken, d. 1746, The Collier's Wedding. 

" A cup, and blast o* baccy, suin 
Blaws a' bad temper by." 

T. Wilson, The Washing Day, 1843. 

BLATE, backward, shy. " He's nyen hlate, noo." 

" I'm but young and blate, 1 trow. 
And kenna what to say or do.'* 

The Mode of Wooin*. 

'* Deeth o' late, he's no been blate. 

But sent some jovial souls a-joggin*." 

W. Oliver, d. 1848, Newcastle Props. 

BLATENESS, backwardness, shyness. 

'* It wasent, mind, because aw'd rued, 
But blateness at a knotty case." 

T. Wilson, The Pitman*s Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 16. 

BLATHER, to talk loosely. See Blabber. 

BLATTER, to clatter, to make a noise as with the feet. — 
Brockett. 



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66 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BLAVER, BLAWORT, the corn bluebottle, Ceniaurea cyanus, 
L. ; formerly known as Blueblaw (Turner). It is an occasional 
weed in cultivated fields, but was formerly abundant. 

BLEA-BERRY, BLEE-BERRY, blue berry. It is otherwi** 
known as the Bilberry or Black Whortle-berry. See Blae- 
berry. 

The frait of Vaccinium myrtillus, " everywhere common in denes and on 
heaths, ascending to all the peaks, 850 yards on Cheviot." — Flora of 
Northumberland and Durham. — Natural History Transactions, vol. ii. 

BLEACH, a black shale of the nature of carbon, found in 
contact with or near a coal seam. Bleach is probably bleck^ 
black. 

BLEACH, the act of rain falling in a strong wind. Q. ** Is 
your roof tight ?'* A. ** It's aall tight, except when the rain 
bleaches.'* That is, when the wind is driven violently aslant, 
so finding its way between the lapped edges of the tiles. 
" Aa wis oot iv aal the wet, and what a bleachin aa gat !** 

BLEACH IN, wandering. " He's aye gan bleachin aboot." 

BLEB, a bubble, a blister. See Blob. 

BLECK, pitch or tar upon ropes. 

BLEDDER, a bladder ; but see Blether, which is the common 
pronunciation. 

BLEE, BLAE, livid, blue, or purple, the colour of a sloe. It 
is applied in the sense as when a man is said to " look blue," 
or to an ashen blue colour. See Blae and Blea-berry. 

" A miller chep aw chanced to see, 
Fre oot amang the crood se hlae. 
Wis rnnning up a yard se slee." 

" Theatre in an Uproar." 

Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 184. 

BLEED, to yield; applied to com, which is said to ^^ bleed 
well" when on thrashing it happens to be very productive. — 
Brockettj quoting from Ray's Gloss. 

•• Coal is said to bleed when water oozes in drops from its pores."— 
Greenwell. 

BLEEZE, to blaze. " The hoose is bleezin." " The paanshop 
bleezin" 

BLEEZER, a hood to blow up a fire. " Put the bleezer up, 
and let's hev a lowe." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 6y 

BLENDINS, BLENDLINS, or BRANDLINS, peas and 
beans mixed. 

BLENKARD, a fighting cock that has lost one eye. The 
word is also applied to a one-eyed person. 

'' To be fought at Messrs. Stata and Stephenson's pit, High Bridge, 
Newcastle^ by cocks, on Monday, April yth, 1817, &c. Stags to be 
allowed i oz., Blenkards 2 0z.,and the usual allowance for feathers.*' — 
Advt. in Newcasth Courant of the date. 

BLETHER, to talk loosely, to blab, to boast. 

" Daft John Bull, that bleihenn* cull." 

J. P. Robson, *' Lizzie Liberty,** 

Bards of the Tyne, 1849. 

BLETHER, loose, blabbing talk. 

«» Jaw'd a heap o' W^M^r." 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Hamlick, pt. ii. 

BLETHER, a bladder, a purse, the bagpipe. 

•* Rattlin' like empty blethers." 

T. Wilson, Oiling of Dicky* s Wig, 1826. 
•' Lay by some cotterils i' the blether.** 

T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii,, v. 59. 

" When this master of minstrelsy oxtered his blether.** 

Northern Minstrels* Budget. 

BLETHER-BREEKS, a boasting, bragging fellow talking, 
not doing. 

BLETHERSKITE, BLETHERSKYET, a babbling person. 

" From Blether and Skate, in Scotch used contemptuously." — Dr. Murray, 
New Eng. Diet. 

BLIG, a blackguard. ** He's a reglor hligr 

BLIN, blind. " BUn Willy." 

" AwVe oft been sae blin* as te nut knaw me mother." 

T. Wilson, Stanzas on New Line of Road, 1824. 

BLIN, to darken, as thorns put into the gap of a hedge. 

BLIN, to stop, or cause to stop, to cease, to desist. — Brockett. 

BLINDERS, blinkers on a horse. 

BLIND- WORM, or slow- worm, the Anguis fragilis. See .Hag- 
worm. 



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68 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BLINK, BLENK, to glance with pleasure. 

" O, the transports of gladness that over me reign 
To blink upon canny Newcastle again." 

T. Oliver. '• Canny Newcastle Again.** 

Bards of ike Tyne, 1849. 

" Madam, indeed, it's your good nature — 
That blenhs sae blythly on your creature." 

JocoSerious Discourse, Newcastle. 1686, p. 50. 

BLINK, a glance, a gleam of light. 

BLINKER, the eye. 

'* Iv a' the greet wonders that dazzles wor blinkers, 
The tallygrip's sartin the king o* them a'." 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870, "TA* Wonderful Tallygrip,"* 

BLIRT. "/» the blirt" exposed to the fury of the elements. 
It is to be remarked that cattle and sheep always fly before 
the storm into the blirt ; horses never. 

BLISS, to bless. 

" The bonny oil lamps, too, wi* which we were blist. 
That twinkled so gaily, like stars in a mist.'* 

R. Gilchrist, 1835, ** Son^ of Improvement." 

Bards of the Tyne, p. 418. 

'* And how the ground he kist 
Wherein it written was, and how himself he blist.** 

Spenser, iv., vii., 46, Nare's Gloss. 

BLISS ME ! an exclamation. "B/«5 me! bairn, where he' ye 
been aall day ?" 

BLOACHER, any large animal. See Blutcher. 

BLOB, BLEIB,BLIBE, a bubble, a blister. Air blobs are 
the floating bubbles on the water, or soap bubbles. **His 
feet was aal blibes before he gat hyem." See Bleb. 

•• Like honey blobs me heart '11 brust." 

J. P. Robson, CalUrfomey, 1849. 

BLOBBERS, bubbles, soap bubbles. " He's blaain bUbbers^ 
" They're blawin blabbers wi' pipe-stopples." 

BLONK, to disappoint. 

" Aw fiand mawsel blonk^d when te Lunnin aw gat." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Canny Newcastle. 

BLOOD-ROOT, the tormentil, Potentilla tormentilla ; called also 
FUsh-and-bloodf Ewe-daisy, and Shepherd' s-hnot. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 69 

BLORT, to splutter out, to speak in an abrupt manner. " A 
blortin cannle," a sputtering candle. 

BLOUSY, BLOWZY, disordered, frousy. Blowzc, a fat, red- 
faced, bloated wench, or one whose head is dressed like a 
slattern. — Bailcfs Diet., 1731. 

BLOW DOWN, to bring down coal or stone with gunpowder. 

BLOWER, an excessive discharge of gas (in a pit), generally 
from a fissure. 

It is defined in the Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, 1848, as " a fissure in the 
roof, floor, or side of a mine, from which a feeder of inflammable air 
discharges." — Buddie, First Report, Society for Preventing Accidents in Coal 
Mines. 

BLOWEY, an iron bloomer ; probably the owner of a bloomery, 
not a forge. (Obs.) 

" To B/bwfVS. of Newcastle, for a ton of Spanish iron. £$ 6s. 8d./' 
under date 1516.— Richard Welford, Hist, ofNewc. XVL Cent., p. 49. 

BLOWN-OUT-SHOT ; in blasting, a charge that only blows 
out the stemming, and is otherwise ineffective. See Fast 
Shot or Standin Bobby. 

BLUE-BILLY, iron residue left as a waste product in copper 
works. 

BLUE-BLAWS. See Blaver. 

BLUE-BOTTLE, the blue titmouse, Parus caruleus; called 
also Blue-cap. 

BLUE METAL, indurated argillaceous shale, of a bluish 
purple colour, resembling that of blue slates. 

BLUE-NEB, the name at Belford, Beal, and Fenham Flats 
district for the widgeon, Mareca Penelope^ L, ; called also the 

BLUE STONE, a long stone of granite placed on the eastern 
footpath of the Old Tyne Bridge, to mark the division 
between the Durham and Northumberland portions of the 
structure. Durham claimed only one-third of the bridge. 
In a deposition of 25th March, 1412, the franchise and 
temporal jurisdiction of St. Cuthbert, of Durham, and of the 
bishop, extends him, it is said, **out of the town of Gateshead 
towards the town of Newcastle, in the highway that lies over 
the bridge to a place that is called Jargonhole." (R. Welford, 
Hist. ofNcwc. XV. Cent. p. 247.) The "mete" or »*bounder'* 



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^0 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

Stones at this point are elsewhere called Cuthbert Stones, {The 
same, p. 258.) In the structure which preceded the present 
Swing Bridge, the Cuthbert Stones were represented by the 
single stone which extended across the entire width of the 
eastern footway. On the demolition of the bridge this stone 
was preserved by the care of Richard Cail, Esq., and now 
reposes in the Old Castle at Newcastle. The blue stone is 
mentioned in Tune, 1598, when the Scottish pledges were 
delivered by the Northumberland authorities to those of the 
county of Durham "at the Blue Stone upon Tyne bridge. 
(R. Welford, Hist, of Newc,^ vol. iij., p. 127.) 

BLUEY, one of many names for the hedge sparrow, which is 
variously called Hedgy, Fieldy^ Spowey, Smokey, Smoity, and 
Blucy — the latter from the colour of its eggs. Bluey is also 
one of the names of the blue titmouse. See Blue-bottle. 

BLUM, bloom. " The whins are in blum" 

BLURY [N.] , cold, sharp; applied to the weather on a dull 
windy day. 

BLUSH, a blister. " Aa've a blush on me foot wi' waakin." 
To blister. " He blushed his hand wi pullin the boat." 

BLUSH, an appearance. "Aa didn't ken him at the forst 
blush:' 

" In all coantries we say he or she hath a blush of, that is, resembles 
such another." — Ray's Gloss. 

BLUTCHER, BLOACHER, a heavy, unwieldy instrument, 
or thing. It is also applied to describe a huge animal. 

BLYTH, glad. 

•' How blytk were vfe.'*— J oca-Serious Discourses, 1686, p. 8. 

BLYTHNESS, gladness. 

*• Sorrow to blythness was instantly turned." — Joco-Sericus Discourses^ 
1686, p. 8. 

Blyth and blythness are interpreted in the margin of these 
Newcastle discourses as words otherwise unintelligible to the 
Southern Englishman. 

BO, a name terrific to children, and a test of manhood when 
addressed to a goose. — 5. Olivet, Rambles in Northumberland, 
1835, p. 98. Bo-man, an apparition, a ghost. See Bad-man. 

BO [W.-T.], ball. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. ^l 

BOAK, W.-T. form of haXh. See Baak. 

BOARD. See Bord. 

BOB, a crank attached to a pumping rod, and called a T bob, 
or a V bob, or an L bob, according to its form. 

BOB, chorus. 

*• All you navigation well wishers, 
Tars, sailors, marines, come along, 
You ferrymen, boatmen and fishers, 
Come help to bear hoh in my song." 

Genuine Tom Whitiell, 1815. 

BOB, a bunch, or cluster, as a ** Boh o* ribbons.** 

•• They saw also thare vynes growe with wondere grete bohbis of 
grapes.'* — M. S. Lincoln^ A. 1. 17/., 42. — HalliweWs Diet. 

*'AwmyJiggs, 
And Jigglng-bobs are laid aside, 
Their Lace, their Ribbons, and their Pride." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourses^ 1686, p. 45. 

" I pu'd her a posie o' gowans, 

An' laid them in bobs at her feet." 

Song by Robert Beiget, Richardson's Table Book. 
Legendary Div., vol. i., p. 317. 

BOBBEROUS, BOBBERSOME, hearty, elated, in high 
spirits. — Brockett. 

BOBBERY, BUBBERY, a noisy disturbance. " What s aa 
this bobbery aboot ? '* 

BOBBY, the ** pink of perfection." 

" An* Willy thou, wi' the jacket blue, 
Thou was the varra Bobby, O 1 *' 

J. Selkirk, d. 1843, Swalwell Hoppin. 

BOB-NET, called also " ring-net," a long salmon net without 
any bosom (which the other nets have). It is fixed by a 
stone or anchor at the one extremity in the river to a post or 
ring on the shore. Compare STELL-iNET and Wear Shot-net. 

BOBS, casters, or trimmers of coal on ship board. 

'• May he live to cheer the bobs 
That skew the coals to shivers, 
Whe like their drink to grip their gobs, 
An' burn their varry livers." 

Song, »• Blind Willie Singing.'* 

Bards of the Tyne, p. 304. 



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72 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BOB'S- A-DYING. A great row or racket is called a Bob's-a- 
dying. "What a Bob' s-a-dying they made!" means "What 
a row they kicked up." 

BOBY, a booby. 

*• In sense they likened us to culls — 
In manners to a boby^ 
Yet oft we've had wor dancen skuels, 
And sometimes Punch and Toby.*' 

T. Wilson, Oiling of Dicky's Wig, 1826, v. 44. 

BOCK [N.] , back. 

BOD [N.], to command. 

BODDLE, a small iron instrument which woodmen use for 
peeling oaks and other trees. — HalliwelVs Diet. 

BODDLE, a small coin, a half-farthiog. It is used in the 
sense of a common or comparatively valueless thing. 

•• And aw the wit in Tony's noddle 
Will never make them worth a boddle." 

G. Stuart, J oco-Smaus Discourse, Newcastle, 1686, p. 45. 

BODDOM, bottom. 

BODE, a bid. "Will anyone give me a bode?'* asks an 
auctioneer. " An unlucky bode " is a bid which happens to 
be made for anything not for sale. A horse-dealer in passing 
a farm took a fancy to a horse which he saw and made a bode 
of /"eo for it. The farmer said it was not for sale, and that 
no money would induce him to part with it. Next day the 
horse was found dead in a field, where it had impaled itself 
on a sharp stob. This was said, in the year 1888, to have 
been owing to the " unlucky bode." 

BODEN, BUDDEN {p.p. of bid), to invite, to command. In 
frequent use. See Bid, 2. 

BODEN, to be in a difficulty. " He's hard boden "—that is, he 
is in straitened circumstances. — Brockett. 

BODLER, a large pin, used to fasten a shawl or plaid. 

BODWORD, an ill-natured errand. An old word for an 
ominous message. — Brockett. (Obs. ?) 

'* Bodeword cam to him fro heaven." 

Curror Mundi. MS. Coll. Trin., Cantab, f. S.^HaHiwell. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 73 

BODY, a person, oneself. 

" Times ha'e been when a body's been axt out te tea/'—T. Charlton, 
IfewG. Improvements. —Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 238. 

BODY. The parts of the body are enumerated in the Pricke of 
Conscience, which was written in the Northumbrian dialect, 
dr. A.D. 1340. They may be compared with the present 
names in the Northumberland folk-speech for these members : 
Heved (head) ; nek ; hrest ; bely ; armes ; handes ; legges ; fote, 
fete; tas and toes; fyngers. At the present time the local 
pronunciation of these words only differs from the modern 
literary English dialect in heed, taes, and fing-er. There are 
also hert (heart), nese (nose), mynde, gast (spirit), hax (back), 
eghe, eghen (eyes), kare, ereSj tung, moutke, tethe, hrowes^ frount 
(forehead), chyn, pouce (pulse). Of these, ghaist and gyest (ghost), 
ee (eye), ee-en (eyes), tung (tongue), mooth (mouth), and broo 
(brow) are still the spoken forms. 

BOGGLE, to start at, to blunder, or bother about. " The 
mear boggled at a haystack." ^^ Boggle about the stacks" says 
Mr. Brockett, " a favourite pastime among young people in 
the country villages, in which one hunts several others 
between the stacks in a farm yard." He adds : " The 
diversion was formerly called barley break, or barley brake" 
^* Playing at boggle** is to startle by sudden and unexpected 
appearance as in this game round the stacks in a **stagarth" 
(stack-garth). 

" Nor am I so skittish as to boggle at an afifront." — G. Stuart, Jfoco- 
Serious Discourse, 1686. 

BOGGLE, BO-BOGGLE, BOGGLE-BO [W.-T.], BO-LO 
[N.] , BO-MAN [T.] , BO-GHEST, BO-GUEST. By such 
diverse variety of names is the being called that even yet 
strikes ghostly terror to the heart of childhood, or lone 
country folk. The boggle is always a personality, having a 
proper name, and haunting a certain spot ; and there is small 
doubt that his existence is the relic of an older faith. " This 
old Northland m3^hology, I find," says Carlyle, ** to be the 
impersonation of the visible workings of nature. The dark 
hostile powers of nature they figure to themselves as * Jotuns,* 
giants, huge shaggy beings of a demoniac character. The 
empire of this Universe is divided between these two ; they 
dwell apart, in perennial internecine feud. The Gods dwell 
above in Asgard, the garden of the Asen or Divinities; 
Yotunheim, a distant dark chaotic land, is the home of 
the Jotuns." (Carlyle*s Heroes and Hero Worship.) To the 
country mind is presented a ruined castle, the name of whose 



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74 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

builder or tenant has never been known ; or there are walls 
and mounds of Roman origin whose history is a blank, or 
miles of paved road made in some far-off time. To all of 
these, however, the neighbouring hind has a legend, giving 
the name and history of a boggle^ who supematurally lived, 
moved, and had his being in this world, and still returns to 
haunt the spot in marvellous " manifestations." These take 
the form of apparition, transformation, rapidity of movement 
on earth or in air, and they are accompanied by feats of 
strength, or demoniacal performances to fright the beholder. 
The gigantic form of Lang Lonkin thus hung round his 
ruined castle in Whittle Dene, terrified the lone traveller by 
shaking his huge keys, or scared the passer who saw his 
dark form lurking over his sunken treasure in the " Whorl 
dub." So, too, the north-east branch of the Watling Street, 
which goes off from the great road at Bewclay, and passes 
athwart Northumberland, is ascribed to the work of a boggle. 
In maps, it is the ** Devil's Causeway," but in local legend it 
is ** Cobb's Causey." Cobb was the builder of this Cyclopean 
way, and, like his neighbour Cor, he was aijdtun, Leland, in 
his Itinerary, describes the site of Roman Corstopitum, and 
says, ** Emong the mines of the olde toun, is a place cauUid 
Colecester, wher hath bene a forteres or castelle. The 
peple ther say that ther dwelled yn it one Yotun, whom they 
fable to have been a gygant." This is " giant Cor," who was 
active in times to which the memory of men yet reaches, 
though his later feats were limited to such simple doings as 
to intercept a lad on his way to the smithy, snatch the 
coulter which he carried, and, with one grasp of his mighty 
hand, to crumple it like a leaf. The coulter, thus bent and 
twisted, was seen of many as it lay on the spot where the 
giant had cast it ; so that if there be not ** five justices' hands 
at it " there is yet fair testimony from respectable people as 
to the truth of the circumstance. Cor had two brothers, 
named Ben and Con, and thus came the names Corbridge, 
Benfieldside, and Consett. " They had a huge hammer in 
common, which each, at a whistle, could throw nine miles. 
On one occasion, when Con, who had become blind, threw 
the hammer, it fell short, and made Howden, which, as the 
name indicates, is a hollow dene near Consett." {Legends and 
Superstitions of Co. Durham^ p. 233.) A boggle of later origin 
was the Hedley Kow, ** About sixty years since the country 
people in the neighbourhood of Hedley, a small village in the 
south of Northumberland, not far from Ebchester, in the 
county of Durham, were frequently annoyed by the pranks of 
a boggle^ called the Hedley Kow.'' (S. Oliver, the Younger, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 75 

Rambles in Northumberland^ 1835, p. 99.) Mr. LongstaflFe gives 
the location at this same place, but Mr. Brockie makes the 
scene of his exploits at Hedley, near Ravensworth (about 4! 
to 5 miles S.S.W. of Newcastle), and details his many 
versatile performances as he translFormed himself into the 
appearance of man, or beast, or fad of straw, and then 
suddenly vanished with a demoniac yell of laughter. Nor 
were these portentious beings found only in the lone lonnings 
of the county. The Bo-ghest^ or Bo-ghaist^ was a veritable 
personality in the streets of Newcastle before lamp and 
watch Acts were obtained. In all cases, it is to be remem- 
bered that a local habitation and a name, as well as an accurate 
account of the life and adventures of the boggle^ were given. 

BOGIE, a small, low, four-wheeled barrow. The word is 
applied to any low truck for the carriage of casks or other 
merchandise ; to the small truck of the platelayer so familiar 
on our railways ; and to the flat board, with four small 
wheels, used by boys in play for running down a hill. 

" In Dean Street, when carts or when bogUs came down, 
The noise made one's heart glad, one's lugs fit to stoun.'* 

R. Gilchrist, 1835, "Song of Improvements.*^ 

Bards of the Tyne, p. 416. 

Reid then improved wor trip te Shiels 

And Tynemouth i' the season, 
A kind o hearse on bogie wheels — 

A paten' press for squeezin'. 

T. Wilson, Captains and the Quayside, 1840. 

BOG-SPINK, the lady's smock, or meadow bitterness, Cardamine 
pratensis ; called also Pinks, or Spinks, Mayflower, and Cuckoo 
flower, 

BOG-STACKER, a goblin, a ghost ; one in a dilemma who 
does not know which way to turn. •* He wis stannin just 
like a bog-stacker** 

BOG-THRISSEL, the Carduus palustris, L. 

BOILEY, boiled milk and bread. 

*• He the brats of their boiley will bilk." 

Song, Ttiadsidc. 

BOKY, soft.— Northumberland.— Halliweirs Diet. Probably 
"boagy,** the spoken form of boggy. 



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76 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BOLE-HILLS {boal-hills), heaps of metallic scoria, which are 
often met with in the lead mine districts. They are the 
remains of an ancient and very simple mode of smelting lead 
by wood fires, on hills, in the open dXt.—Brockett. 

BOLL, BOAL, BOU, or BOW. At Alnwick, a boll of barley 
or oats was six bushels; of wheat two bushels. At 
Hexham, a boll of barley or of oats, five bushels ; of peas, 
rye, or wheat, four bushels ; at Newcastle, two bushels ; at 
Wooler, six bushels; there called the ^^aadhow" (or Scotch 
boll). 

" The Coal Boll has been raised upon a measure equal, probably, to 
that of com. It was as much as a man could conveniently carry. . . . 
When ' barrows* were brought into use, the quantity conveyed increased, 
and along with it the boll also increased. In some old grants this 
measure is specified as the ' bowle or barrowe.' By statute 30 Car. II., 
c. 8, the bowl tub of Newcastle is declared to contain 22 gallons and a 
pottle (22) gallons), Winchester measure; it was 27 inches in diameter, 
and there were 21 bolls heap^ measure to each chaldron. By the same 
Act, the content of each wain is to be seven bolls, and each cart three 
bolls and one bushel heaped measure, and three wains or six carts are to 
be a chaldron." — T. John Taylor, Archaology Coal Trade, 1852. 

The coal boll contains "9,676-8 cubic inches, or 34.899 imperial 
gallons. "-—G/ossary to Law of Mines, W. Bainbridge, 1856, p. 653. 

" Item p* for ten boules of coles for the infected people's use, 5s." — 
Gateshead Church Books, 1646. 

BO-LO, a term used by nurses to frighten children. "The 
Bo'lo will get you ! " See Boggle. 

BOLT, to fine flour through a sieve. White flour and white 
bread were formerly called " bolted *' or " booted,*' An 
advertisement of 1828 reads, *• Hay and Maclain, Bolted 
bread bakers, No. 14, Side, Newcastle." BoiUt is the 
historical spelling of the word — not bolt. See Booted-loaf. 

BO-MAN, a ghostly being, or boggle. See Boggle. 

BON', bond, surety. '* He wis bon' for him"— he was surety 
for him. The bond is the agreement between coalowners and 
their men. Now an obsolete term. See Bindin. 

BON. This word occurs in the common exclamations "Go 
bon " and '* Di bon." Bon in these connections looks very 
like ban, or curse. If this is the word, then Go bon ! would be 
equivalent to " God's curse," and Di bon ! to " DeePs curse." 
See Exclamations. 

V 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 77 

BONDAGER, a female field-worker whom the hind covenants 
to supply on his engagement to a farmer. The term hondager 
is general in Northumberland. An account of the bondage 
service will be found in Mackenzie's Hist, of Northumberland , 
vol. ii., p. 52. See Hind. 

" BordariuSt bondarius, bondus, husbandus. These words are identical in 
meaning, and imply a class of men who formed one grade under the 
general term villani, . . In North Northumberland at the present day 
each hired cottager, or hind, as he is called, is bound by his engagement 
to find a person, called a bondager, to work for a certain sum whenever 
his master requires it. This seems to be a relic of the old bond 
service." — The Rev. Canon Greenwell. Glossary to Boldon Buke, 1852. 

•* He must not be confounded with the bond-slave, or serf. He was 
the buendf or husbandman — the buend with a hus — the equivalent of the 
Scandinavian bonder, but not of the Odal-bonder ; and a relic of the 
olden time still lingers in the North Country under the name of the 
' bondage system,' entailing, not serfdom, but the necessity of finding 
extra labour in field work." — £. W. Robertson, Historical Essays, 1872. 

•• The bondagers puird turnips for fower-pence a day, 
Wuv stree ropes round their legs ta keep the snaw away." 

Geo. Chatt, *• Old Parmer" Poems, 1866, p. 87. 

BOND-DARG, a day's labour rendered to the lord of the 
manor or to the lancUord. See Boon-day and Darg. 

"A remarkable custom, derived from the feudal system, is still 
observed at Great Whittington. The freeholders are obliged to senjd 
seven mowers and fourteen reapers to Halton Castle for one day every 
year, when called upon. It is called the bond darg. The labourers 
receive no wages, but are plentifully supplied with victuals and drink." — 
Mackenzie and Dent, Hist, of Northumberland, 181 1, vol. ii., p. 810. 

BOND-MONEY, earnest money, or arles, given on engaging 
a servant. 

BOND-RYDING, the name of some piece of ground which 
had been ridded or cleared of wood, and for which its owner 
was thirled or bound to do certain services to his lord. — 
Hodgson's Northumberland^ iii. 2, p. 326, note i. 

BONE. See Beyen and Byen. 

BONE-PINS, pins made of mutton bones, formerly used for 
fastening roofing slates. (Obs.) 

BONETICKLE, the stickleback. 

BONFIRE (pronounced byen-fire)^ originally bone-fixe. The 
bonfires on Midsummer Eve have been regularly kept up to 
within late times at Whalton, at Elsdon, and in many villages 
in Northumberland. See Midsummer Eve. 



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78 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS, . 

" For the annual midsummer ' banefir*,* or ' bofifire,* in the buiig^h of 
Hawick, old bones were regularly collected and stored up. down to about 
1800." — In Ord. Cooks, Newc, 1 57 s.-^Brand^s Popular Antiquiiies, 1870. i., 
178. " The said Fellowship of Cookes shall yearelie maiutei^ne and keep 
the bone-fires — that is to say, one bone-fire on the even of the Feast of the 
Nativitie of St. John Baptist, and the other on the even of the Feast of St. 
Peter the Apostle ! "—Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

" The Mayor's muckle bane-fire set on flame." — G. Stuart, Joco-Serious 
Discourse, Newcastle, 1686, p. 18. 

BONGRACE, a shade or curtain formerly worn on the front 
of women's bonnets or caps to protect the complexion from 
the sun ; a sunshade. — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet, This 
article of costume is yet in regular use among the women 
workers in the Northumberland field', but the sweetness of 
the old name is now-a-days lost to us, and it is commonly 
called an " ugly." (Obs.) 

" Her bongrace was of wended straw, 
From the sun's beams her face to free." 

Song, The Northumberland Bagpiper, 

BONKER, BUNKER, a fixed seat, often a box or receptacle 
below and a seat on top. 

"Wha sat them close upon their bonkers,** — G. Stuart, Joco-Serious 
Discourse, Newcastle, 1686. 

BONNILY, fairly, pretty well. ** Yor get tin' on bonnily wi'd, 
aa see." 

BONNY, good looking. This word in the dialect is often 
used, like the word "canny," to describe character as well as 
outward comeliness. "What a bonny bairn ! " It describes 
any good appearance, as ** A bonny hoose," "A bonny horse," 
"A bonny place,*' ^* A bonny fyece." '^ Bonny at morn, canny at 
neet." By inversion it means the reverse of anything good. 
"Thor's a bonny gam gaan on." •* Ye've made a bonny mess 
on't, noo.** ** Aa*d a bonny time on't.'* " Yor a bonny chep, 
noo ! " ** Here's a bonny go." 

** My bonny keel laddie, my canny keel laddie, 
My bonny keel laddie for me, O ! '* 

Old Song. 

BOODY, BOOLY, a piece of broken pot, or earthenware, 
used by children for decorating their play-houses. — Hodgson 
MS. 

" A whirlwind cam an* myed a' souse. 
Like heaps o* babby boodies.'* 

J. Thompson, Jimmy Joneson*s Whorry. 

•' A heap o' bits o* boodies.** — His Other Eye, 1880, p. 4. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 79 

BOODYANKERSl an exclamation. '' Boodyankers ! here's a 
traikle barl brust " (chorus of juveniles at a shop door). 

BOODY-HOOSE, a child's play-house, set out with "hoodies." 

BOOGE {booje)^ to bulge, to give ground. " He never hooged'' 

BOOK, bulk. " To gan into little hookr 

BOOL, the bole, or stem of a tree below the branches. " What 
length is the hool ? " — what is the length of the best timber — 
the tree up to its branches. 

BOOL, an iron plate attached to the oars of keels and wherries. 
The hool has a round eye in its centre, and through this the 
thole pin passes. 

BOOL, a rounded water- worn stone, such as is used for paving 
side walks in country places. A bowl or ball, usually made 
of stone, and thrown in a game of •* boolin.'* *« War the 
hool I'' — the customary caution, shouted as a bowl is thrown. 

" War the hool there, wor the hool there ! Harry Wardle's myed a 
throw." — E. Corvan, d. 1865, Wor Tyneside Champions. — Allan's Collection, 
p. 88. 

"* Ne lad like him could heave a hool." 

J. P. Robson, •' Days and Deeds 0* Shakspeare.*' 
Bards of the Tyne, p. 99. 

" Bob hez thee at loupin' an flingin*. 
At the hool, football, clubby, and swingin'." 

J. Selkirk, d. 1843, Boh Cranky s 'Size Sunday. 

BOOL, to play at the game of hoolin^ or howling. The usual 
play is to go round a course in the fewest number of throws. 
Weights of bowls are specified in a match. 

•• Then ower the moor, an* roond the coarse, ye'll fynd them hoolin there." 

E. Corvan, Wor Tyneside Champions. 

BOOL, to run very quickly. 

" In aw hools'' — J. P. Robson, Polly's Nickstick, 1848. 

" From a long row of gingerbread and orange stalls could be heard 
some dame crying out lustily, ' Bool up and buy away.' " — Description of 
Stagshawhank Fair. — R. Forster, History of Corbridge, 1881, p. 67. 

*' The Dutchman hool'd alang, 
Upon a gimcrack 1^." 
T. Wilson, Opening of Newcastle and Carlisle Railway ^ 1838. 

BOOLIES [W.-T.] , potsherds. See Boody. 

BOOLTER, a miller. See Bolt. 



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8o NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BOOLY. See Boody. 

BOOLY, BULLY, the bullfinch, Pyrrkula vulgaris. 

BOOMER, smuggled gin. In the third edition of Brockeifs 
Gloss, the word is omitted. In the second edition it appears 
with the note, " So called from a place in Northumberland** 
(Boulmer), " where that staggering test of loyalty — the 
payment of imposts — is impenetrable.'* The connection of 
Boulmer with smuggling was formerly proverbial; and not 
only gin, but all kinds of taxed commodities, were commonly 
supplied " duty free *' by the adventurous fishermen of that 
place. 

BOOME-TREE, the name of a venerable tree which stood in 
the wall of the churchyard at Alnwick. It was blown down 
on 17th February, 1836. It was a noble specimen of the 
common ash {Fraximus excelsior). — Wm. Dickson, in Hist, of 
Bks. Naturalists* Club, vol. iv., p. 12. Compare Bor-tree. 

BOON, bound. "Aa*s boon to be there.** "Where are you 
boon for ?" 

BOON, BEUN, to do service to another as a landlord. — Ray's 
Gloss. 

BOON, a band of reapers. See Bandwin. 

"There is a contest among the maidens in the boon or gang of 
reapers." — W. Brockie, Legends and Superstitions y p. iii. 

BOOND, to enclose. The final d often silent. 

BOONDARY, boundary. 

BOON -DAY, "the service of a day's work which tenants 
rendered their lord in agricultural work.** — The Rev. Canon 
Greenwell, Glossary to The Boldon Buke. Boon-day is also 
a day's ploughing rendered gratuitously by neighbouring 
farmers to a new tenant. On these occasions the teams 
vie with each other in appearance and in the work of the 
day. Horses are specially groomed and gaily decorated with 
rosettes and coloured ribbons. See Bond-darg and Darg. 

BOONDER, BOUNDER, to control. "Ye mun boonder 
yorsel** — you must control yourself. " Here, Mary, help me 
wi* this jam ; it canna be boondered.*' The jam was boiling 
over. [Heard at Thropton.] 

BOONDLESS, boundless. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 8l 

BOONDS, bounds. 

BOON-TREE, the elder. See Bor-tree. 

BOOR, BOORY (the pronunciation of bower). The dowager 
lady of a house had her own apartment, or bower, separate 
from the rest of her son's household — a room set specially 
apart for her private use. 

'*The parlour, or inner chamber through the kitchen, in country 
houses, in which the head person of a family generally sleeps.** — Brockettt 
from Ray, 

BOOR, to bore a hole. 

BOORDLY, burly, strong, vigorous. ** He's a boordly leukin 
chep " — applied to a stout, well-made man. 

BOOREY, BOWERY, BREWERY, a ring; also a game at 
marbles. A ring is drawn, and on its circumference and in 
its centre are placed common marbles. The player •* fires " 
from the "past," or starting mark, and all the marbles 
knocked outside the ring become his own. The marble rests 
where it has stopped till the next player has had his **shot,*' 
and each in turn plays from his place of rest till the ring has 
been cleared. When all the shots but one have been cleared, 
the player next in order has the option of **alie"; this is 
done by laying his **tar" inside the boorey and close to 
the "shot." At his next turn he "fires" so as to knock 
out the "shot" and lay his "tar" as near as possible to 
the "tar" of the player who holds the greatest number of 
shots, at which he now "fires," and if he makes a successful 
hit, or "kill," he wins the game, and takes over all the 
marbles won by the adversary whom he has " killed." 

BOORLY, rough, unpolished, boorish. — Brockett. See Boordly. 

BOOSE, an ox or cow^s stall. — Ray^s Gloss. Where the cattle 
stand all night in winter. It is now more generally used for 
the upper part of the stall, where the fodder lies. — Brockett. 
** A cow boose.'' " A hay boose" 

BOOT, about. 

" BootLunnun aw*d heard — ay sec wonderful spokes.**— T. Thompson, 
d. 1816, Canny Newcastle* 

BOOTCHER, a butcher. 

F 



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82 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BOOTED-LOAF, a loaf of fine or booted {ue., bolted) flour, and 
made specially for the " cryin' oot," the time when an increase 
in the family occurred. In times when brown leavened bread 
only was used, a loaf made of fine white flour was a special 
luxury. It was served up at confinements, with what was 
appropriately called ** groaning cheese," to the neighbours 
who had come to condole and help on the occasion. 

BOOT-HALER, a freebooter, robber, or marauder. — Brockcit. 
(Obs.) 

BOOTHER, BOODER, a boulder. 

BOOTHMAN, a corn merchant of former days. The Booth- 
men were incorporated with the company of Merchant 
Adventurers in Newcastle. (Obs.) 

BOOTY, unfairly. (Obs.) 

" Sometimes they'll play fairly, and whiles they'll play booty** — 
G. Stuart, JocoSerioui Discourse, 1686. 

BOOZE, a drinking bout. " He's on the booze'' — that is, he has 
a drinking fit. 

" We'll hev a royal hooz$ te-day.'* 

T. Wilson, The Oiling of Dicky s Wig, 1826. 

" We hooz$d away till the break of day." 

Old Song, Till the Tide Comes In, 

BOOZY, drunken. 

BOOZY-ALLEY, an ejaculation used by boys. "Ye boozy- 
alley ^ what a crood thor is !" 

BOR (the pronunciation of 6wiy), the name for the guttural r 
of Northumberland. 

BORD, BOARD, **the space allotted generally to one man 
to work in, in a colliery." — Gloss, to Pitman's Pay. " A sheth of 
boards," is the name of a group of boards. There are ** narrow 
boards,'' ** travelling boards," ** stow boards " •* the mother's gate, 
or common going board," &c., all of them distinguishing the 
kind of board which they describe. In a glossary of coal 
trade terms, 1849, a ** wide board" is described as a pillar in 
length and four or five yards in width — a "narrow board^' not 
more than two yards wide. The older workings, however, 
are described in the following note from a quaint old book : — 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 83 

" A yard and quarter broad or wide for a headways is full sufficient, 
and out of this it is we turn off the hoards or other workings, for every 
particular hewer, or miner, and that board or work place lor that one 
man is generally about three yards, or better, in breadth, and so from 
the headways, which we will say runs south, we work the hoards east and 
west of the headways."— J. C, Th$ CompUat Collier, 1708, p. 42. 

" A passage driven across the fibres, or grain of the coal." — Min.Gloss.t 
Newc. Terms, See Cleat. 

" The hords^ or main excavations, are driven in parallel lines across the 
planes of cleavage of the seam (on account of the coal being worked most 
easily in this direction), and of a width' of three, four, or five yards, 
according to the character of the roof of the mine. Between these 
hordsy walls or ribs of coal are left, while narrow excavations (about two 
yards in width), termed headways, are driven at intervals to connect the 
bords with each other for purposes of haulage and ventilation.*' — 
R. L. Galloway, Hist, of Coal Mining, 1882, p. 85. 

'* In bye they bum'd me in a crack, 
An* left me i' ma laither*s hord" 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, p. ii., v. 35. 

BORD, a bird. ^^ Arly bord** is the very familiar sound in 
Newcastle for " early bird," 

BORDE-CLOTH, a tablecloth. (Obs.) 

" 3 lyn horde-clothes, a shotr and a longr, 4s. Sd.*' — Will, in Richard 
Welford's Hist, of Newc. XVI. Cent., p. 320. 

BORDER, THE BORDER, THE BORDERS— the boundary 
between England and Scotland ; the district adjoining this 
boundary on both sides; the English and Scottish borderland. 
(The term appears to have been first established in Scotland, 
where the English border, being the only one it has, was 
emphatically the border.). — Dr. Murray, New Eng. Did. 

" She's ower the border and awa' 
Wi* Jock o' Hazeldean." 

Hazeldean is in the valley of the Tyne, near Haltwhistle. — 
See Hodgson, iii., 2, p. 383. 

BORDER- WATCH. This was a regular patrol kept to " raise 
the scry*' in case of inroad. The line of this by no means 
coincides with the division now known as the march or 
boundary between the two kingdoms. It cuts right through 
the present county of Northumberland, and affords a means of 
explaining the difference between the men of Central and 
Southern Northumberland and those of the franchises of 
Redesdale and Tynedale. ** The inhabitants " of the latter, 
says Dr. Charlton, ** were evidently little to be trusted by 



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84 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

their neigrhbours on the East, as well as by their Scottish 
foes on the West. These two rivers were closely watched 
every night along a line, extending from Haltwhistle in South 
Tyne, down to the junction of the Tyne at Warden, and 
from thence up the North T5me to Chipchace. From 
Chipchace Ford, the line was carried by Throckrington, 
Sweethope, and Whelpington to the Coquet. Two watchers 
were appointed to each ford. North Tynedale was con- 
sidered as beginning at the Nook on the south side of the 
river, and at Reedsmouth on the north bank, and extending 
from thence up to the Bellyng, beyond which there were 
then (time of Henry VIII.), it is said, no habitations.** (Dr. 
Charlton, North Tynedale, p. 30.) *• The parties there brought 
up are known either by education or nature not to be of 
honest conversation. They commit frequent thefts and other 
felonys, and no apprentice must be taken proceeding from 
such lawless and wicked progenitors." (Richard Welford, 
History of Newcastle, vol. i., p. 396, extract from Books of 
Merchants' Company, 1564. For the last 150 years Nortn 
Tynedale and Redesdale have been ** quiet pastoral vales, 
peopled by an intelligent, handsome, and strongly-built race, 
as free from crime and vice as any part of the British 
dominions." (Dr. Charlton, North Tynedale, p. loi.) 

BORD-ROOM, or BOARD-ROOM, the width across an old 
board in a pit. 

BORD WAY'S COURSE, the direction at right angles to the 
line of cleavage or cleat of coal. — Greenwell. 

BOREN, borne ; the p.p. of bear {p.t. bar) ; also the pronunciation 
of born. " When war ye boren ? " 

BORE-RODS, iron rods and appliances used for ascertaining 
the nature of strata before sinking a pit. The rods are 
screwed together in lengths, the end piece faced with a 
cutting chisel. A wimble takes the place of a chisel to bring 
up triturated material or clay. It is a cylindrical box, or 
case, screwed like an auger at the bottom. Sludgers are 
somewhat similar tools, but fitted with a clack to hold in 
moist material. A bitch is used for recovering broken rods. 
The top of a set of rods is fitted with a strong cross pole or 
handle called a brace-head. The lever, by which a vertical 
motion is given to jerk down the cutting end on the strata, is 
called a break. A rotary motion is given at each stroke by 
turning the brace-head. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 85 

BORN, a burn, the name in Northumberland for a considerable 
stream. A burn is smaller than a river, but larger than a 
syke. Ouse burn, Skinner's burn, Denton burn, &c, 

" Between the foot of Cowon-wood borne and Lamleye — two men 
nightly. The borne foot to be watched nightly." — "Border watches" 
ordered in 1552. — Hodgson's Northumberland, pt. ij., vol. iii., p. 118, note. 
" Come o'er the bourn, Bessy, to me." 

Song in Lear, iii. 6. 

This spelling is nearer the pronunciation of the Northumber- 
land bornthzn is theScottish form otburn, SeeBuRN andBECK. 

BORN-DAYS, a frequent expression, as ** Iv aa me born-days,'' 
for "In all my life." 

BORNEY, BURNEY, BIRNEY. 

" Bimie ground is where thick heath has been burnt, leaving the birns 
or unconsumed stalks, standing up sharp and stubbley." — Glossary to 
Bnms's Works. 

" BiRN. The charred stem of burnt heath, which remains after moor- 
burning. Hence Bimy, or abounding in birns." — Dr. Murray, NewEng. 
Diet. 

" By dawn of day Mary and Bett, 
Hies to the bimie knows." 

Verses on a View of Roadley Castle. 

BORN-FEUL, an innate fool. 
BORRAL, the elder tree. See Bor-tree. 

BORROWED-DAYS. " March borrowed of Aperhill, Three- 
days and they were ill." The three last days of March (old 
style). The popular notion is that they were borrowed by 
March from April with a view to the destruction of a parcel 
of unoffending young sheep — a purpose, however, in which 
March was not successful. Mr. Brockett says : *' The 
superstitious will neither borrow nor lend anything on any 
of these days, lest the article should be employed for evil 
purposes." The whole affair is conveyed in a rhyme thus 
given at the firesides of the Scottish peasantry : — 
'• March said to Aperill, 
I see three hoggs upon a hill, 
And if You'll lend me dayes three, 
I'll find a way to make them dee. 
The first o' them was wind and weet, 
The second o' them was snaw and sleet, 
The third of them was sic a freeze. 
It froze the birds' nebs to the trees ; 
When the three days were past and gane, 
These three silly hoggs came hirpling hame.'* 
*• Most probably the tradition has taken its rise in the observation of 
a certain character of weather prevailing about the close of March, 
somewhat different from what the season justifies ; one of those many 
wintry relapses which belong to the nature of a British spring. " — 
Chambers, Book of Days, I, p. 448. 



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86 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BORROWED-FIRE, a light obtained from a neighbour, 

" To request a light on the morning of the New Year, is held as a 
most portentous omen. Several, will not for any consideration, even 
allow a borrowed fire to proceed from their dwellings." — ^J. Hardy, 
Richardson's Table Book. — Legendary Div.^ vol. ii., p. 288. 

BORSE, BIRSE, a chisel of triangular shape, used for cleaning 
up the corners of mortice-holes. — Hodgson MS, 

BORST, an outburst, a vehement attack. To «* bide the horsV^ 
is to stand the oncome. Brockett has hivsi. See Brust. 

BOR-TREE, BUR-TREE, BOUR-TREE, BOON-TREE, 
BOUN-TREE, or BORRAL, the elder tree, Samhucus nigra. 
The pith is easily removed, and a hollow tube formed which 
is used as a pop-gun and known as *' a bor-tree gun." There 
is a salve made from the elder called bountry saw. 

" A branch of the common elder, bur-tree, or bore-iree, is supposed to 
possess great virtue in guarding the wearer against the malevolence of 
witches, fairies, and other ' uncanny ' people. Some say the cross was 
made from the wood of the bore-tree; others, equally worthy to be 
believed, that Judas hanged himself on it. In some districts the tree 
is known as the Bown-tree, which means the sacred tree."— W. Brockie. 
Legends and Superititions, p. 114. 

BOSOM, BOOSOM, the bag of a fishing net in which the 
fish are generally caught. The net is so constructed as 
to belly-out in mid-water when being hauled in. 

BOSS, empty ; hollow-sounding, as an empty cask. 

BOTTLE, a building, a house. Bottle Bank, WsAbottUy Har- 
bottUy Shiibottle, Newbottlc, &c. Old English botl, a house, 
dwelling. 

BOTTLE, as much hay or straw, tied or bound together with 
a rope, as a man can conveniently carry on his back, A 
*• fad," or ** faud," is a lesser quantity, such as can be 
conveniently carried under the arm or in the hand. "To 
look for a needle in a bottle of hay '* — to engage in a hopeless 
search. 

" Old French botel, dim. of bot, masculine {orm—botte, bundle. — Dr. 
Murray, New Eng. Diet 

" Methinks I have a great desire to a bottle of hay ; good hay, sweet 
hay, hath no fellow." — Bottom, in Midsummer Night's Dream, iv. i. 

BOTTOM, a board generally of narrow dimensions, but the 
full breadth of the tree it was sawn from. — Hodgson MS, 
Bottom board, the movable bottom of a coal waggon. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 87 

BOTTOM, the Soor of a coal miae. It is generally called the 
thill. 

" A fathom boring in the thill or bottom under the coal you would 
work."— J. C, Compleat Collier, 1708, p. 14. 

BOU, a boll, which see. 

BOUGHT (pronounced hout)^ a sheep fold. It is specially a 
pen for confining ewes at milking time. — Dr. Murray, New 
Eng, Diet, 

BOUGHT-BREED (pronounced bout-breed), bread bought from 
a baker. The custom in Northumberland being to buy /iour 
and bake it at home causes the special reference to the buying 
of bread. Mr. Brockett says it is ** the finer quality bolted by 
the baker, in opposition to a coarser kind made at home." 
This suggests a connection between bought and bolted, but no 
such construction need be put on ** bought bread." 

BOUK (pronounced bouk), to eructate, to belch. ** Man alive, 
ov aa things aa like a geuse to eat, 'cas it bouks up se fine." 
" Aa varry nigh bouk'd me boiley '* is a phrase — I was very 
nearly sick.*' 

BOUK, in mining, a report made by the cracking of the strata 
owing to the extraction of the coal beneath ; also the noise 
made by the escape of gas under pressure. — GreenwelL 

BOUK (pronounced book)^ to steep or soak in lye. The old 
way of ** doing up " linen. 

" Then the thred is sod, and bleaked, and bucked, and layed to drieing, 
&c." — Bartholomew, 302-6, book xvii., c. 97. — Hodgson MS. 

Falstaff was carried off in a buck basket, and intercepted. Ford : 
" Whither bear you this (basketj ? " Serv. : " To the laundress, 
forsooth.** Mrs. Ford : •• Why, wnat have you to do whither they 
bear it ? You were best meddle with ^u^A-washing." — Meny Wives of 
Windsor. 

BOUK, to bellow in play or anger, as an ox. 

BOUK, bulk, or size. 

** As early as the 15th century this word was confounded with bulk sb., 
which afterwards usurped most of its senses and has superseded it in 
literary use. The modern dialect and Scottish bouk seems to be partly 
a survival of the mid-English bouk [trunk of the body), partly the 
regular descendant of the M.£. bolk, Bulk.*' — Dr. Murray, New Eng. 
Diet, 

" Ned was nowther laith nor lyem, 
An' faith he had baith bouk an' byen." 

Song, Wrekinton Hiring. 



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88 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BOUKIN-FULL, full to repletion. 

BOULT, to sift flour through a fine cloth. See Bolt, Booted- 
loaf. 

BOUNDER, a boundary. See Boonder. 

BOUNTRY, the elder tree. See Bor-tree. 

BOUNTRY SAW, a salve, made from the boon or elder tree- 
See Bor-tree. 

BOURD, to }est.—Brockett. (? Obs.) 

BOUSE, lead ore picked and ready for dressing. A bouse-tcam 
is a heap of ore teamed, or emptied from a cart. 

" The bouse, or impure ore, is usually let to the washers at so much per 
bing."— Mackenzie. Hist, of Northumberland^ vol. i., p. loo. 

•' Ix)ng rows of bouse-teams and bing-steads on each side." — W. W. 
Tomlinson, Guide to Northumberland, p. i6o. 

BOUT, BOOT, a recurring event, — Gloss, to Pitman* s Pay. 
** He hes the pains agyen, an's hed a bad bout on't this time." 
** Hoo are ye thi day, Mally ? " ** O hinny, aa've sic boots 
i' me heed." 

" Bout, a contest or struggle ; especially when applied to a jovial 
meeting of the legitimate sons of Bacchus." — Brockett. 

BOUT, a bolt. 

BOUT, bought, p.t, of buy. 

BOWDYKITE, a contemptuous term, often used to a forward 
child ; a presumptuous or unskilful person, a young scape- 
grace. The term is always applied to a male. It is a term 
of derision applied to a youth who has shown some precocious 
talentk " He's just a bowdykite lad." 

" De'il smash a good teun could this bowdykite play." 

R. Emery, b. 1794, d. 1871, Baggy-nanny. 

BOWEL-HIVE-GRASS, the parsley piert, Alchemilla arvensis. 
It is made into a decoction and given in cases of hives. 

BOWEL-HOLE, BOO-EL-HOLE, the window slit in a byre, 
a small circular perforation in a fortified building, any unglazed 
aperture in a wall. Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet., gives bowel 
as a rare variant of bole or boal, " an unglazed aperture in the 
wall of a castle, cottage, stable, &c., for admitting air or 
light ; sometimes closed with a shutter." In Northumber- 
land bowel is pronounced as boo-el. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 89 

BOWER, a bow maker. (Obs.) 

" Wm. Wilde, of Newcastle, bowir^ aged about sixty years, deposed, 
&c."— R. Welford. Hist, of N ewe. XVI. Cent., p. 378. 

BOWERY, plump, buxom and young. Applied to a young 
woman in great health. — Hodgson MS. 

BOWET, a lantern. 

BOWIE, a wooden dish, made with staves and hoops, for milk 
or porridge. Compare Bicker. 

BOWLD, bold. 

" Bowld Sandy Bowes — Young Cuckoo Jack."^Allan's Tyneside Songs, 
p. 6. 

BOWLES. (Obs.) 

" The knoppes or heads (of flax) are called in Northumberland bowles, 
and within these heads are long flat seeds', in colour reddish." — Turner* s 
Herbal, ii., 396. 

BOWLEY, a small bowl. 

BO WLEY, a peculiar method of locomotion used by cripples. 

BOWOWARTS, BLACK-BOWOWARTS, or BLACK- 
BOWOWERS, brambles. 

BOWTHERLY, bothersome. (Obs.) 

" He was a bowtherly fallowe." — W. W. Tomlinson, Guide to Northumber- 
land, 1888, p. 281. 

BOWZY, in the family way, bouncy ; also bushy, busky, or 
bosky. Bowzy is also a form of ** boozey " — drunky. 
" My bonrtree bush and bouzy tree." — Ettrick Shepherd. 

BOX, a benefit or friendly society. So called from the common 
box into which the funds were collected. The annual festival 
of such a society is called the •* Box dinner." 

** The excellent arrangements observed in their (the keelmen's) boxes, 
or benefit societies." — An Impartial Hist, of Newc.^ 1801. 

BOX-BED, a bed made like a bunk or berth ; formerly a 
common arrangement in country houses where room was 
scanty. 

BOXINGS, the coarse offal from flour after the bran is taken 
off; generally used for feeding pigs, &c. The common 
name for this is chisel, which see. 



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go NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BRAA (same as the Scottish braw), fine, handsome, trim, neat. 

BRAALY, in fine condition. " Hoo is thoo the day ? " " Aa's 
braaly, lad." 

BRABBLEMENT, a noisy quarrel, or indecent wrangling. — 
Brocketi. 

" We hold our time too predons to be spent 
With such a hrablerV 

King John, v. 2, quoted by Nares. 

BRACE-HEAD, in a bore-rod, is the strong oak or ash cross- 
bar at the top of the rods, by which they are moved round 
at each vertical stroke in boring. 

BRACK, p,t. of hreahy or brick, 

" He brack his shin." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. 20. 

BRACKEN, BRECKAN, the brake fern, Pteris aquUina, L. 
It is regularly harvested for the bedding of cattle. It was 
formerly used for the manufacture of soap and glass. 

BRACKEN-CLOCK, the small gay-coloured chafer, PA>//fo^/ki 
horticola, L, 

BRADE OF, BREID OF, to be like in condition.— i?fl/5 
Gloss,, 1 69 1. (? Obs.) 

BRADS, coins, money. — J. P. Robson, Gloss, to Bards of the 
Tyne. 

BRAE, BREE, a steep bank, as, the broken ground by a river 
side. See Bree. 

BKAIK, or BRAKE, a kind of harrow used by farmers for 
clod breaking. 

BRAFFAM, BRIFFAM, BARFHAM, BRIHAM, 
BRAUGHAM, a horse collar. It is curious that this word 
is seen in such guises that the various forms given hardly 
exhaust the ways of spelling it. 

" Paide for a grete bregham to the carte heede, 2s. 6d." — NewcastU 
Municipal Accounts^ March, 1592. 

" As country lads be a* arrayed 
Wi' branks and brecham on each mare." 

Jock 0* th$ Syde, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 9I 

BRAG, a goblin. The Portobello Brag was well-known and 
feared at the Low Fell. See Bar-guest and Boggle. 

" A kind of wicked sprite." — T. Wilson, note to Tht OilitC 0* Dichy*s 
Wig, 1826. "The description of the Pelton Brag" continues Mr. 
Wilson, ** by Sir Cuthbert Sharp, in his Bishoprick Gaaland, induces me 
to believe that it must have been the same roguish sprite that played 
such tricks at Portobello. It delighted in mischief, and whoever 
mounted it (for it always appeared in the shape of an ass) were sure 
to be thrown into some bog or whin bush at the 1^, when the creature, 
as if enjoying the mischief, would run ofif ' nickerin' an' laffin*." 

BRAID, broad. Compare Brbde. 

" * Bessie with the braid apron,* was a familiar epithet applied to 
Elizabeth, daughter of Lord pacre, the wife of Lord William Howard 
(Belted Will), whose broad lands swelled the fortunes of his younger 
brother, the progenitor of the families of Carlisle and Corby." — Brockett. 

" Leanin on the hud steahyn wi' his braid shouthers." — T. Bewick, 
The Howdy, &c., ed. 1830, p. 10. 

BRAID, to hraid^ •* describes the muscular action which 
precedes vomiting, reaching, heaving.*' — Hodgson MS. **AaVe 
braided sair aall neet, doctor." 

BRAID-BAND. Barley is often laid in broad-band to dry when 
reaped. 

BRAKE, a lever forming part of the apparatus used in coal- 
boring. It is a simple beam having a crook at one end to 
which the bore-rods are attached by a chain and sling rope. 
When the depth attained in boring has become so great that 
the bore-rods cannot be lifted by the men at the brace-head, 
then the brake is brought into requisition. By its powerful 
leverage the rods are lifted and then allowed to drop, the 
rods being turned by the brace-head at each stroke. 

BRAKESMAN, the man in charge of the winding-engine at 
a pit. 

BRAMBLING, the mountain finch, Fringilla montifringilla. 

BRAN, a boar ; a male pig. 

BRANDED, BRANDIT, brindled. " A branded quey," " A 
brandit stot,'' is a beast of a mixed black and red colour. 

BRANDERS, the piers or abutting part of the foundations of 
a bridge which become visible when the water is low. 

BRAND-IRONS, and-irons. The irons for holding up the 
logs in a wood fire. 



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92 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BRANDLING, a river trout caught in the Tyne. 

BRANDLINGS, large peas of a brownish-yellow spotted 
colour, quite diflferent from the ordinary grey pea, much 
fancied and in request for " carlins\" 

BRANDLING-WORM (pronounced branlin), the worm found 
in manure heap& which has red stripes round it. It is well 
known to trout ushers, and is also called the Dew worm. 

BRANDRITH, a trivet or other iron on which to set a vessel 
over a fire. — Ra/s Gloss, Compare Girdle, 2. 

BRANDY-SNAPS, very thin, brittle cakes, made of ginger- 
bread, and baked hard. 

BRANK, to hold the head up affectedly; to put a bridle or 
restraint on anything. — Brockett. 

BRANKS, a bridle of primitive construction, having a piece 
of wood on each side joined to a halter. These side pieces 
are referred to in Burns* Death and Dr. Hornbook : — 

" And then its shanks, 
They were as thin, as sharp, an sma*, 
As cheeks o' branksV 

Sometimes a bit is added; but more frequently a wooden 
nose resembling a muzzle. — Ogilvie, Imperial Diet. It was 
thus that the expedition of the Laird's Jock, the Laird's 
Wat, and Hobbie Noble were instructed to set out for 
Newcastle : — 

" Your armour good ye manna shaw, 
Nor yet appear like men o' weir ; 
As country lads be a* arrayed 
Wi' branks and brecham on each mare." 

yock 0* the Syde. 

In A Joco-Serious Discourse^ by George Stuart, printed for 
Benjamin Toole, London, and John Story, Newcastle, 1686, 
p. 27, the word in the following passage is explained, " bridle 
or halter " :— 

*• When wanton Yfiud has cast her rider, 
And taen sike freeks that nane can guide her, 
Under her feet she gets her branks , 
And stark-horn-mad she plys her shanks." 

But it is as a bridle for humanity that the branks is best 
known in Newcastle and Morpeth ; for at each of these towns 
an iron muzzle is kept and known as **the branks.*' It is a 
cage-like structure, going over the head. In front is a 
tongue of iron which passed into the mouth and effectually 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 93 

gauged the wearer. The punishment of the branks was 
inflicted upon incorrigible scolds, who were sentenced to be 
led in this guise through the public streets by the "hougher " ; 
and the municipal accounts show that the custom was 
regularly enforced : — 

" Paide for caring a woman throughe the towne for skoulding, with 
branks, ^^.'* -^Newcastle Municipal Accounts, April, 1595. 

Thomas Wilson, describing the Polytechnic Exhibition in 
Newcastle of 1840, says : — 

" The branks, a kind o' brake, is here, 
Wor faithers, when a* else was vain, 
Compell'd the noisy jades to weer, 
Wnene'er their clappers ran amain." 

Mr. G. B. Richardson states that this punishment was in use 
at least so late as 1761, and probably much later. At 
Morpeth, it occurs in use in 1741, on December 3rd. — Notes 
to Reprint of Municipal Accounts. The branks is now in the 
custody of the Society of Antiquaries of Newcastle, and is 
exhibited in the Old Castle. 

BRAN-NEW, quite new. 

BRANT, steep, difficult of ascent, as •* a brant hill." It also 
means consequential, pompous in one's walk ; '• you seem 
very brant this morning." A game cock is brant. Loftiness 
enters into all the meanings of this word. — Hodgson MS, 
See Brent. 

•• As brant as the side of a house.*' — Ray*s Gloss.t 1691, E.D.S., B. 15. 

"The excellent Prince Thomas Howarde, D. of Norfolke, with 
bowemen of Englande, slewe King Jamye with many a noble Scotte, 
even brant against Flodden Hill." — Asckam ToxophylitCy p. 104, quoted in 
Nare*s Gloss., p. 56. " There it seems to mean ' up the steep side.* " — 
Nares. 

BRANT, burned. Imperfect tense of the verb to bum. 

*' He brant the bed bottom out."— yac* Fairlamb^s Exploit in the Kitty. 

BRASH, acidity of the stomach, causing a flow of water to the 
mouth — ^known as " the watter brash" 

BRASH, melted snow. "Snaw brash;' ''Brashy weather." 
** Brashy wettor." See also Slush. 

BRASH, hasty, impetuous. — Brockett. 

BRASH, a rash or eruption on the skin. *< He*s aal come oot 
iv a brashy like mizzles." 



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94 NORTHUMBEHLAND WORDS, 

BRASH, a vigorous push or pull; a strong spurt in violent 
exertion is called a brash. In churning, for instance, the 
proffer of help is often given — ** Noo, maa lass, aa'llgie ye a 
brash." 

BRASHY, small, delicate in constitution, subject to frequent 
bodily indisposition or weakness. Soft stone is also said to 
. be brashy, — Brocketi. Compare Brash, 2. 

BRASS, money. Impudence is called brass. See Brazen. 

•• The cheps that fand the bras5.**^T. Wilson, Opening of Railway, 1838- 

BRASS, iron pyrites found in the coal measures ; also called 
Brass lumps. 

" Coal mixed with brass.'* — Borings and Sinkings, A.B., p. 233. 
BRASS BAND, a layer of iron pyrites. 

BRASSY, containing iron pyrites. 

" The coal has the reputation of being in parts brassy." — Hugh Miller. 
Geology o/Otterbum and Elsdon,^Geol. Survey Memoir, 1887, p. 33. 

BRASSY, pert, lively, forward in manner. Principally applied 
to young people of an active but presumptive turn. " A 
brassy callant.'* " A brassy little fellow." 

BRAST, burst {the pJ. oibrust). Traveller : " Bella, did onybody 
ivver get drunk on yer smaall beer, hinny?" Hostess : ** Na; 
but there was twee that brast," 

BRAT, the name for the turbot on the Northumberland coast. 

" The crabby aad dealers in ling, cod, and brats. 
An* the virgins that tempt us wi' nice maiden skyet/' 

T. Wilson, The Movement, 1839. 

BRAT, a neglected or disagreeable child. 

BRAT, a kind of dual apron, usually made of a sheepskin, or 
coarse sacking, worn by farm men when building corn stacks, 
or when bathing sheep. In the latter case it is called a 
*• bathing brat.** Brat (knee), a covering for the knees used 
by stackers, generally made from coarse sacking, or sheep- 
skin with the wool on it. A child's bib. Raiment. 

" Maw canny bairns luik pale and wan 
Their bits and brats are varra scant." 

T. "Wilson, Pitman's Pay^ 1826, pt. i., v. 57. 

Here " bits and brats" mean food and raiment. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 95 

BRAT, a scum on the surface of liquid; the curdled soap 
Boating on the top of water after washing ; a hard and broken 
crust on the surface of soil. Compare Brat, in coal mining, 
and Brat, to curdle or solidify, below. 

BRAT, in coal mining, a thin stratum of coarse coal or black 
stone, sometimes mixed with carbonate of lime and pyrites, 
frequently found lying at the roof of a seam of coal. 

" Limestone brat 2 feet 6 inches." — Borings and Sinkings, L.R., p. 113. 

BRAT, to curdle. Thunder brats the cream. Earth is said to 
be bratted when baked and cracked with the sun, and plants, 
when similarly dried and cracked, are said to be hrattcd. 

BRATCHET, an ill-behaved child; but often applied familiarly 
and aflfectionately to a lively child. ** Ye cunnin' little 
bratchct ; aa see ye there." 

BRATCHET, a thin liquor made from the last squeezing of 
the honeycomb. — Brockett. See Bragget. (Obs.) 

BRATTISH, BRATTISHING, BRATTICE, a partition. 
The high wood back acting as screen to a long-settle is 
called a braitish. A Northumberland man was asked to come 
further into the room. He replied : ** No, thank ye ; aa'll 
just sit ahint the brattish*' He had modestly taken a seat 
near the screen at the door. In a room, a portion is said to 
be '^brattishcdoff*' when a wooden partition has been run up 
to form a division or second apartment. In mining, where 
one shaft is used for a double purpose, it is divided by a 
brattish, or brattice ; this is called the shaft brattish. ** A wood 
partition used for ventilation when there is only one opening 
or passage." {Gloss. Newc, Mining Terms^ 1852.) "The brattice 
that divided the back shaft, or pvunping side, from the fore 
shaft, where the coals as well as the men and boys were 
drawn up to and from their work." (Robt. Scott, Ventilation 
of Coal Mines, 1868, p. 34.) When in other parts of the pit, 
it is called the ** drift," " headways," " board," &c., brattish, 
according to the situation in which it is placed. "The 
coUerens which formerly supported the bratticing were all 
gone to decay." (R. Scott, Above, p. 31.) Brattice-cloth is 
strong canvas steeped in Archangel tar, and used in making 
temporary air courses. In architecture, carved work on the 
top of a shrine. " Before we descend let us glance between 
the brattishing which surrounds the sides." (Rev. Provost 
Consitt, Life of St. Cuthbert, 1887, p. 247.) To fortify with 



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96 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

timber. " At Clennel is a little tower of the inheritance of 
one Percival Clennel, gent., newly reperelled and hrattysiud" 
{Survey of Nortkumberlattd, in 1541, Sir Robert Bowes. — 
Hodgson MS.) See Bates, Border Holds, p. 54. 

BRATTLE, a fray, a loud noise, a peal of thunder. 

" Says he, I have got quite enough, 
Sae thus we gave ower the brattle.** 

Song, •* Valentin$*s Day.** 

Bards of the Tyne, p. 167. 

BRAUTINS, girdle cakes with cheese sandwiched between. 
Mr. Brockett says the dish was formerly prepared for 
mowers in the hay harvest, and carried to them in the field. 
On the authority of a woman, aged 99, he adds that this was 
a repast on Midsummer Eve, and also on St. Thomas's 
Night. 

BRAVE, an emphatic prefix, adding intensity; for instance, 
'^ Brave an* dry " means very dry ; " Brave an* seun,** in very 
good time ; ** Brave an* near,** very near indeed. " He*s a 
brave Strang un," he*s a very strong one. ♦* A brave lad," is a 
nice comely fellow. Brave must always be joined with some- 
thing agreeable. 

BRAVELY, in excellent health — however deficient in courage. — 
Brockett. See Braaley. 

BRAXY-MUTTON, mutton of a sheep that has died of a 
disease termed ** the braxies.'* See Traik. 

BRAY, to pound, to hammer at, to assault. Brayed sand is 
pounded sandstone. " Aa*ll bray the sowl oot o* ye.*' 

'* He bray*d away byeth lang and sair, 
Before the stannin corf was hew'd ; 
Was droppin sweet firae iv'ry hair, 
An hidden iv a reeky cloud." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v. 36. 

BRAYER, or BRAYING-STONE, a beater used in pounding 
soft sandstone. 

BRAYS, small coke. See Breeze. 

BRAZEN, impudent. ** She's a brazen huzzy.** 

BREAK, a crack or small natural cavity in a coal seam. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 97 

BREAKER, a large crack formed in the roof of a pit next to 
the goaf, or a crack caused by cleavage in stratification. 
See also Bricker. 

BREAK THE GRUND, to dig a grave. The term is more 
applicable to the place where families consider they have a 
claim to be interred. 

BREAST, the projecting mantel o^a chimney. Breast-summer, 
the mantel-piece or beam thrown across it. 

BRECK, BREAK, a short story. 

" Od ; I could tell ye ower as monie o' Jamie's brechs as wad fill a hale 
beuik.** — James Armstrong, Dandie Dinmont. 

BRECK, a portion of a field cultivated by itself. — ^James Britten, 
Old Country and Farming Words, E.D.S. See Brick, 2. 

BRECKAN, the brake fern. See Bracken. 

BRECK ANY, abounding in, or covered with brake fern. 

BREDE, to make broad, to spread. — Rays Gloss. Hence brede^ 
breadth or extent. Bred, a board. ^^Baaks and breds** are 
beam and scale-boards familiar in the farm dairy for weighing 
butter. See note under Baaks and Breds. 

BREDS, scale boards. 

BRED- VENOM, a gathering or suppuration which originates 
in bad blood or from some cause within a person's body, as a 
whitlow. It distinguishes from an income, which is a gathering 
occasioned by an outside cause. See Income. 

BREE, BREAY, the breast of a hill, the brink or bank of a 
river. 

" Belllngham Church stands near the edge of a steep brae which slopes 
downward to the Tyne." — S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, 
P- 153- 

'* The little valley of the Nent was once a fairyland, and had its flowery 
meadows, and wild shaws, and bosky breays." — Hodgson's Hist. 0/ 
Northumberland, iii., 2.. p. 39. 

*' Aw smacked thir yell, aw climb'd thir bree 
The seet was wondrous, vurry." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Jimmy Jonesons Whurry, 

BREECHES, the roe of a fish when unbroken or imcut. 

G 



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98 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BREED, to make, to extend. " Here, lads! leVsbrud a slidey," 
that is, *<Let us work on till a slide is made on the ice." 
See Brede. 

BREED, bread. 

" Think of a heap o* hungry bairns 
Aboat an empty cubboard cryin', 
Wi mebby he that hardlv earns 
Their daily breidi in sickness lyin'." 

T. Wilson. Pitntan's Pay, pt. ill., v. 51. 

BREED- AN-CHEESE, the opening bud of the hawthorn tree. 
It is often eaten by children, and thus called. 

BREEK, to put into trousers. A memorable time in the life 
of youth. 

" Frae beein' breek'd till fit to marry." 

T. Wilson, Pitman s Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v. 78. 

BREEKS, trousers. 

" Ma bran new coat an breeks wis gyen.** 

Song, Wor Mally Tcmed Bloomer. 

" Then fierce as fire she seized the breeks,'* 

T. Wilson, PitmaH*s Pay, 1826, pt. i. v. 45. 

BREER, the eglantine or sweet-briar. Wild sweet hrere^ the 
wild rose, Rosa tomentosa. 

BREEST, breast. " His bare breestr « The chimley brusL" 
To give an infant ** the breest " is to suckle it. 

BREEST, the iron in a smith's fire next the snout, or nozzle, 
of the bellows. 

BREET, bright. 

" Her high-heeled shoon, wi* buckles breet." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt- iii-i v. 12. 

BREETH, breath. " Aa's run till aa's oot o' breethJ' 

BREETH, breadth. " A ban's breeth "—a handsbreadth. 

BREEZE, BRAYS, small coke, or the dust of coke. 

BREMEL or BRIMMEL, the bramble. 

BREMEL-BARRIES, bramble-berries. Called also Bummel- 
kites, Black Bow-wowers, &c. 

BRENCH, a br«anch. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. . 99 

BRENT, steep. Breni-hrovr, a steep hill ; meiaph. The brow of 
a hill, the edge or side of a hill, or precipice. — Ra/s Gloss., 
1691, E.D.S., B. 15. Something set up or standing up; 
hence applied to a "stuck-up*' or consequential person. See 
Brant. 

" Just then aw saw wor lads gannin' by, 
As streight as rashers, and sae brent. ' 

'' Shield's Races.'* 
Bards of the Tyne^ 1849, p. 492. 

BRENTIN, the act, in playing marbles, of placing the hand 
on the knee and so discharging the marble from an elevation. 
^^ Brent doon" is the instruction, in playing, to keep the hand 
down on the ground. 

BRERE, to sprout, to spring up, to prick up in the manner 
grain does when it first germinates. — Hodgson MS. ** It had 
just breered when the caad nipt it" — that is, the plant had 
just shown above ground when the cold nipped it. See also 
Breer. 

BREWERY, a boys' game at marbles. See Boorey. 

BREWIS, crusts or pieces of bread soaked in the fat of 
pottSige.—Bailcys Diet. ( ? Obs.) 

BRIAN, ** to brian an oven," to keep fire at the mouth of it, 
. either to give light or to preserve the heat. — Ray, North- 
Country Words, 1691. 

BRICK, to break. 

*• Ye'll brick yor neck, mind. 
Yor high-flown cheps oft fyel an' brick.** 

T. Wilson, Pitman*s Pay, 1827, pt. il., v. 95. 

BRICK, a patch of growing turnips surrounded by a net within 
which sheep are placed to eat oflf the crop. The brick (break) 
no doubt distinguishes between it and the unbroken part of 
the crop. See Breck, 2. 

BRICK, the birch tree. See Birk. 

BRICKER, BREAKER, a fissure produced in the roof of the 
mine, from the pressure on removing the pillar. — Brochett. 

BRICKWAST, BRICKFAST, breakfast. 

BRIDAL, BRIDE-ALE, a wedding feast. 

•* "When Brydals, or Horse Races fell." — G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 
1686, p. 19. 

BRIDE-SPURS, spurs allotted to the best runner after the 
marriage ceremony. — Brockctt. See Kail. (Obs.) 



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lOO NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BRIDE'S-WAIN, a wedding custom. (Obs.) 

" On the occasion of the celebration of a marriage, the bride's furni- 
ture was brought in a wain or waggon to her husband's house, with 
much pomp and ceremony ; on the top of the load, and forming the 
most promment object in it, was her spinning wheel, gaily decorated 
with ribbons. This was called the brids's wain" — Rev. J. £. Elliot, 
Hist. o/Bks. Nat. Club, vol. vi.. p. 246. 

BRIEF, a memorial, or begging letter signed by some 
responsible person, and carried about by a poor petitioner 
who has lost a cow or horse, or suffered some misfortune. 

BRIERS, beams or girders fixed across a shaft top. 

BRIG, a bridge. "The aad brigr " Corhrigr 

*' Shell neist try the Quay — the Custom-House, tee— 
The Brig — an' wor awd coaly river." 

T. Wilson, The Movements, 1839. 
•• Fre there aa went alang the Brig/*— Ma Canny Hinny. 

BRIHAM, BRIME, a horse collar. This word has several 
forms — barkham, hraffam^ hriffam, barpiam^ braugham, breckdm^ 
&€. — but the common pronunciation is briham. See note under 
Heyems. 

BRIHAM, or BIRGHAM-FLAP, the old arrangement of the 
trouser band and front. 

BRIM. A sow in kind is said to be "a brimmer," or "a 
breeming." A sow is said to go to brim when she goes to the 
boar. 

BRITCHIN, that portion of horse harness buckled to the cart 
saddle, passing round the hinder part of the horse and fastened 
by chains to the "limmers" of the cart. 

BRIZZ, BRISS, to press, to squeeze, to bear a weight upon, 
to press down with the fingers, to constrain with the arms. 
'* Come, let me brizz your breast to mine." "ToJrm beneath 
the heel of contempt.*' 

BRIZZLE, BRISTLE, BIRSEL, to crackle in cooking. 

The carlins " will then parch, crack, and, as we provincially call it, 
bristle ; when they begin to burst they are ready to eat.'* — Correspondent 
from Northumberland to Gentleman's Magazine, 1788, p. 189. 

" Mr. George Stephenson, the engineer, was at Mr. Hinde*s dinner 
(British Association, Newcastle, 1838). He told me that he and his son 
had made an inclined plane in their works to ascertain why the railroad 
did not rust, and on laying silk on the line, after it had been used, that it 
all ' brizzled up,' and he was then assured that they were electrified." — 
Journal of Rev. John Hodgson, Raine's Life, vol. ii., pp. 382-3. 

" The modern Scotch is birsle ; but i6th century English had brissill, 
and 17th century Northern dialect frms/f ."— Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 101 

BROACH, a reel of yam. Compare Pirn. 

BROACH, the spire of a church. This word is given in the 
Gentleman's Magazine of 1794 as a word from Newcastle. 

" Chester-le-Street has a bonny, bonny church, 
With a broach upon the steeple ; 
But Chester-le-Street is a dirty, dirty town, 
An mair shyem for the people." 

Broach is now used as an architectural term to describe a spire 
springing direct from the tower without any intermediate 
parapet. ** Broach^ a spit. It is a French word ; from its 
similitude whereto a spire-steeple is called a ftroocA- steeple, 
as an obelisk is denominated from (Greek) ohelos, a spit. It 
signifies also a butcher's prick." — Ray's Gloss. 

BROACH, to break a hole through the stopping in a pit. 

BROACH, to face stones with a mason's pick. In local work, 
the stone is set on its broadest "bed," and the mason so 
works it, always striking downward with his pick. " Broached 
stones " are stones thus dressed. 

BROCK, a badger {Afeles iaxus), or a badger hound. To stink 
like a brock" ** To sweat like a brock" are proverbs. The 
latter from the little insect (the larva of the froghopper) in 
the cuckoo spit, called a brock. See Grey. 

" Others brawl about Jack's brock, 
That all the Chowden dogs can bang." 

Thos. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. i., v. 31. 

BROCK, a name sometimes given to a cow or husbandry 
horse. — Brockett, 

BROCK, any refuse straw or hay, &c., broken short. 

BROCKEN, broken. See Broken. 

•• They could, aw think, compare't wi* nowse 
But Clootie's gang, a" bracken lowse, 
And frae his clutches fleein'." 

T. Wilson, Opening of Newcastle and Carlisle Railway, 1838. 

BROCK-FYECED, marked in the face with a streak like a 
badger. A ** brock-faced cow." 

BROCKLE, BRUCKLE, liable to break, frail, uncertain, 
precarious. Hence applied to variable or uncertain weather, 
as **a brockle day." 



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102 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BROCKWELL ; <* the lowest workable (coal) seam of any 
district is, ipso facto, called the " Brockwell." — Professor G. 
A. Lebour, M.A,, Geology of Northumberland and Durham, 2nd 
ed., 1886, p. 51. Compare with Brockle, above. 

BROD, a small nail. (Obs.) 

" Four hundred hrods, is. 8d. ; two boncbes laths, 2s.** — Richard 
Welford, HUt. of N ewe, XVI. Cent., p. 356. 

BROD, or BRUD, to separate peas from beans by means of 
a riddle. 

BROGLER, an untrained person, ''a feckless body." ** He's 
just a brogler'* — that is, he is a poor hand, as a poor preacher, 
an unqualified medical practitioner, or a bad workman. 

BROGLY, shaky, twisted, uneven. "Aa've a pair o' com- 
passes, but thor varry brogly yens " — that is, bent and twisted 
in the legs and generally shaky. " The road's a varry brogly 
yen. 

BROKEN, ** a part of the mine where the pillars are in course 
of removal.*' — Min. Gloss, Newc, Terms, 1852. 

*' They begin to work off the standing pillars of coal, which is (as the 
miners say) working in the broken. *'-~Robt. Scott, Ventilation of Coal 
Mines, 1868, p. 14. 

" The partial working of pillars was commenced at Walker Colliery 
by Thomas Barnes in 1795, and improved by Mr. Buddie at Percy Main 
in 1810." — Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, 1849. 

BROKEN-MEAT, meat left after a meal. 

BROKET, a lark -Northumberland. See Pennant's Tour in 
Scotland, 1790, i„ 48. — HalliwelVs Diet. 

BRONG, an occasional p. ten. of bring. " He brong it aall on 
hissel." Brongen and brong are used as p. part. ** If ye*d oney 
brong it seuner." See Browt. 

BROO, the forehead. " Sic a heed ! all mooth an* breo."' The 
face of a dyke in a pit. See Canch. 

'* The front of the depressed roof at a dip hiich.'^—GreenwelU 

BROO, inclination, good opinion. Used in the negative. " Aa 
hed no broo on't" — I had a bad opinion of it and was timorous 
of the issue. 

BROODY, having a brood. "A broody hen," a hen with 
chickens. ** Broody, or hroddy," is said of a matron who has 
her children in quick succession. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I03 

BROON, brown. 

BROON-BUZZOMS, besoms made of broom. See Brum. 

BROON-GEORGE, brown bread. 

BROONIE, a brown spirit, popularly supposed to be dis- 
tinguished from a fairy, or fair-complexioned spirit, by its 
brown skin. See Duergar. 

BROON-KITTY, or KITTY-WREN, the wren. Troglodytes 
parvidus, 

BROON-LEAMER, a hazel nut, when it becomes brown and 
mealy ended, ripe and ready to fall out of its husk. — Rev. J. 
Hodgson, Archceologia ^liana, vol. ii., p. 132. 

" The term is figuratively applied to generous persons, called also 
BrownshilUrs.^—HalliwelVs Diet. 

BROSSEN, BROSTEN, BRUSSEN, or BRUSTEN, burst. 

•* • A brosstn kite,' one with a large and well-replenished corporation."— 
Hodgson MS. 

BROTH, used as a plural noun. " A few broth." 

BROTT, shaken com. — Ra/s Collection of North-Country Wordsy 
1691. 

•* Brotts, fragments, droppings." — HalliweWs Diet, 

BROUGH, BROOF, in Northumberland, the name for the 
halo which in thin, hazy weather encircles the moon, and 
is seen in mist sometimes over the sun. — Hodgson MS. 
** He*ye seen the broofroond the myun thi' neet ? It*s a lang 
way oiF." The belief is that the larger the diameter of the 
circle the greater the anticipated storm. 

BROUGHTENS, in Rothbury parish, are cakes, with thin 
layers of cheese put on each side and baked, to give to 
mowers for their noon, or luncheons. — Hodgson MS. See 
Brautins. 

BROUT, brought. " He yout them o up.*' See Browt. 

BROWDEN, BROODIN, to be anxious for, or warmly 
attached to, any object ; to be enamoured of it. — Brockett. 
See Broo, 2. 

BROWDIN, BROODIN, vain, conceited, bold, forward.— 
Brockett^ 3rd ed. 



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104 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BROWN-HEADED-DUCK, the golden-eye duck, Clangula 
glaucion. 

BROWN-HEN, a name for the black grouse, Tettao tetrix. It 
is also called black cock and black game. 

BROWN LINNET, one of the names for the linnet, Cannabina 
linota. Other names for the bird are lennart^ and grey, red, 
and rose linnet, 

BROWST, a brewing, a quantity brewed at any one time. — 
Brockeit, 3rd ed. 

BROWSTER, a brevfer.—Brockett, 3rd ed. 

BROWT, brought, p. pari, browien. " He hrowt his fether win 
him ; it's a wonder he hadn't browten his grandfether tee." 
*' He browt him up to the butchin business.*' Brong is an 
occasional form. 

BROWTENS-UP, upbringing. ** It just shows his browtens- 
up " — that is, it shows the way in which he has been brought 
up. It is generally applied to misconduct or want of early 
training. 

BRUCH, the old name for a toad-stool, or a fungus. — Hodgson 
MS. 

" Toad-stool, or, as the Northumbers call them, bruches.** — Turner's 
Herbal, 1562. 

BRUCKLE, to dirty.— Rays Gloss. 

•• To broohU, or brukU, in the North, is to make wet and dirty. •'— 
Kennett. p. 137, quoted HalliweWs Diet. 

BRUCKLED, Aixty.— Ray's Gloss. 

" Wet, stormy ; applied to the weather.*— BrotA^//. 
" BruckeVd wants explanation. Herrick speaks of * boys and bruchcVd 
children, playing for points and pins,' "--Nare's Gloss. See explanation 
above. 

BRUD, to separate peas from beans. See Brod. 

BRUISER, a bullying fellow. 

" He can wallop a* the bruisers an' greet bullies on the Kee." — Ed- 
Corvan, 1854, Fire on the Quay, 

BRULLIMENT, a broil or qu3iTTel—Brockett. 

BRUM, the plant broom. '^ Brum (or broon) buzzoms" are 
bezoms made from broom, or, as they are called in colloquial 
English, ** brooms." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORbs. I05 

BRUMSEN, brimstone. 

BRUN, to burn. This is the common pronunciation in 
Northumberland; pA,, brunt. The ^^ Brunt Hoose** was 
. formerly a noted hostelry in the Side at Newcastle. 

•• An aged Jacobite, whom we knew well in early youth, told us that 
the most vivid recollection of old Miss Mary (Hodgson of Tone) was 
that of general Forster's (Forsterof Adderstones) appearance at Hexham, 
at the head of the English Jacobites, and of the splendid way he 
managed his magnificent black charger ; but, added she, ' That was all 
he was worth, for he was a pig-headed fool.' Had she written these 
words she would no doubt have added, as she did to her dying day, 
* Rede and broun' read and burn, so habitual had secrecy been to her in 
early years." — Dr. Charlton, Society in Northumberland in Last Century, 
1874. P- 3- 

BRUNLIN, one who is made a butt or fool of. "Ye needn't 
think yor gan to myek a brunlin o' me" — said by one too 
sharp to be imposed upon. 

BRUNT (j^J. of brun)f burnt. During a game at ball, or 

marbles, if one steps in the way, so as to stop the course of 

ball or marble, the plaything is said to be brunt. << He brunt 

the baal.*' ** Thoo's brunt maa tar ; aa*ll he' that shot ower." 

" A piece oibmnt stob." — ^T. Wilson, Joyce's Patent Stove, 

BRUSSLE (see Brizzle, which is the same word), to crackle 
in cooking or burning.. 

BRUST, to burst (past^ brast; p, part, brussen or brosun). **To 
brust*' — ^to break the skin, as " Til brust your gob." trusted is 
sometimes used. 

•• The times we've run till like to brust 
To hear blind Willie singin'." 

R. Gilchrist, d. 1844, ^^'"^ Willie Singing. 
'* Ne ought could them endure, but all they cleft or brast." — Faerie 
Queene, book v., cant, xii.-xvii. 

Shakspeare has, •' I'll be sworn he never saw him, but once in the tilt- 
yard ; and then be burst his head, for crouching among the marshsd's- 
men.*' — 2nd Henry IV., iii. 2. 

BRUZZLED, oveV'TosLSted.—HalliwelL See Brizzle. 

BUBBLE, to snuffle, to blubber, to cry. The expression, *< he 
bubbled and cried" is very common. 

•• The prayer wadn't de, so they started te bubble, 
Twas a' they could say i* the midst ov their trouble." 

Song, The Devil, or the Nanny Goat, 

BUBBLES, the secretion or mucus of the nose. " Wipe the 
bubbles off the bairn's nose." 



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I06 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS- 

BUBBLY, snottery, soft, blubbering. 

" He's an ugly body, a bubbly body, 
An ill-far'd, ugly loon." 

"Sandgati Girls* Lamentation." 

BelVs Rhymes, 1812, p. 48. 
" The keel-bullies a\ byeth great and sma, 
Myed a bubbly tide o* the hoppin', O I" 

J. Selkirk, d. 1843, ** Swalwell Hopping." 
BelVs Rhymes, 1812, p. 47. 

BUBBLY-JOCK, the male turkey. Probably so named from 
the wattles hanging from the front of his bill and do¥ni his 
neck. 

BUCK, the driver used by players in the games of " trippet 
and quoit *' and ** kitty-cat-an -iw^r^-stick." 

BUCK, the hook for attaching the chains to a plough beam. 

BUCK-BUCK, a game played by two boys. One boy " makes 
a back," and the other player leaps on it, calling out, '' Buck- 
huchy hoo many fingers div aa had up.'* If the buck guesses 
right the players exchange places. 

BUCKER, a sand beater, used for making "bray-sand"; a 
domestic utensil, with iron head and wooden handle, for 
crushing sandstone to a powder for stone floors. Buckers were 
used formerly for crushing lead ore before the introduction of 
machinery for ** stamping." 

BUCKET, the piston of a lifting set of pumps in a pit. — Nerve. 
Mining Terms, See Sword. 

BUCKET-TREE, the pipe between the working barrel of a 
pump and the windbore. 

BUCKLE, to marry. 

BUCKLE, a dint, or bend, or twist in the face of a plate of 
iron ; " a buckled plate" is a plate that has got twisted or set 
awry on its face. 

BUCKLE-HORNS, bent horns. 

BUCKLE-MOOTHED, having a twisted mouth. See Buckle, 
2, above. 

" What a fyess, begok I had buckle-moothed jocV, 
When he twined his jaws for the baccy, O." 

}. Selkirk, Swalwell Hopping. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORD?. I07 

BUCKLE-TO, to work in earnest, to agree with. "Come, 
lads, let's buckle to^ 

" Now, they'd nothing more to do 
But make the mother buckle to ; 
Which must be done, or else the bargain 
Would not be worth A single farthing." 

Edward Chicken, The CoUur's Wedding, 1735. 

BUCKSHEENED, having the shin bones bucked^ or crooked 
to the front ; a condition produced by ricket in early life. 
" Bucksheen'd Bob, fra Stella, O." 

}. Selkirk. Swalwell Hopping. 

BUDDEN, ordered ; invited to a funeral. See Boden and 
Bid, 2. 

BUDDOCK, the buttock, or nether part. 

" He sits in his huddock and claws his bare buddoek." 

Song, Bonnie Keel Laddie. 

BUDDY-BUD, BUDDY-BUS, the flower of the burr, or 
burdock, Arctium lappa, Linnaus, — Brockeit* 

BUDDY-BUDDY, the call to chickens for their food. 

BUER, a gnat.— /?ay*s Gloss. ( ? Obs.) 

BUESS, BEUST, or BUST, a stall, station, or part of office, 
or business ; a beast stall, or booze, — Brockeit. See Boose. 

BUFF, a blow given by one boy to another to provoke him to 
fight. Compare Cowbat. 

BUFF, to beat. A word formerly in polite use. (Obs.) 
" There was a shock 
To have bufd out the blood 
Of ought but a block." 

Ben Jonson, quoted in Ware's Diet. 

BUFF, to labour heavily. 

** He was buffin* at a back as hard as whinstone." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1843, pt., ii., v. 34. . 

BUFF, to polish a knife, after sharpening it, by stroking, or 
buffing it on a soft leather strap. 

BUFF, the bare skin. ** He wis stripped to the buff:' 

" Adam wore his native buf." — Ware's Gloss.t under word Adam Bell. 

BUFFET, a foot-stool ; sometimes called a bujfet-stool. 

•• Five buffette-sioo\s, 2s. 6d/*— IV/// of Robert Clarering of CaUaly, in 
D. D. Dixon's Vale of Whittingham, 1887, p. 39. 



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Io8 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS, 

BUFF-FRONTS, BUFF-FACES, or BULL-FACES, tufts 
of coarse grass, Aira caspitosa. See Bull-pyet. 

BUFF-NOR-STYE. " He could neither say buff nor stye" — 
said of a simpleton, or of one who is surprised past speech. 
Another form of this expression is gruff -nor -stye, ** He 
nowther said gruff -nor -stye'' — that is, he churlishly gave no 
answer whatever. It is said when a person has been grossly 
insulting in his manner by refusing to answer when spoken 
to. In N are's Gloss,^ huff ne haff'is given ; " Neither one thing 
nor another. Nothing at all." 

BUGHT, a sheepfold. See Bought. 

" A structure described by the shepherds as a bught for milking ewes, 
or assorting sheep." — ^James Hall, Guid$ to GUndale, 1887, p. 99. 

" Aneath the dusky peak o' Cheviot, 

Where the falcon spreads his flashing wings, 
Where the wild thyme springs, and blue-bells blossom, 
And the lavrock o'er the yov/e-bvght sings." 

James Anderson, The Scottish Lassie, 1879. 

BUIK, BUICK, a book. Pronounced bee-yuk and byuk, which 
see. In Anglo-Saxon the word is b6c ; and the accented 
vowel is in Northumberland sounded as ee-yu. 

BUIRDLY, stout, stalwart, of large stately frame. 

BUIS, a space for the forage of stall-fed cattle. See Buess. 

BUIST, BUEST, or BUST, to put a mark or brand upon 
sheep or cattle by their owners. — Brockett. The pronunciation 
is b-yeast. See Byest. 

BULE, BOOL, the bow of a pan or kettle. — Brockett. 

BULK, the open stall of a shop. 

" The shop windows of one of these houses (No. 76, Head of the Side) 
^ were the last ^vhich remained unglazed in Newcastle, and retained, 
within living memory, what were known as open bulks." — Knowles and 
Boyle, Vestiges of Old Newcastle, 1887, p. 4. 

BULL, a round bar of iron used in blasting in wet holes. The 
hole being stuffed with clay, a bull is driven through it, and 
thus a water-tight pocket for the blasting-charge is made. 
Also a short prop, with forked end, hung loosely at the rear 
of a set of tubs in ascending ; or so balanced in front of a set 
of descending tubs, on an inclined plane, as to strike with 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. lOQ 

the points and hold the set, should the rope break. It is 
also called ** a cow," and is hung on the lever, or ** start," of 
a gin or crab. The recoil of the load, when winding ceases, 
causes the horns of the cow, or bull, to be thrust into the 
ground. The gin is thus brought to rest, whilst the bull 
holds the weight and prevents a retrograde movement. 

BULL, a stone for sharpening a scythe; usually a piece of 
rounded or squared sandstone of fine grain. A nodule. Iron 
bulls, or balls, are ironstone nodules. 

BULL-DOG, the slag run from a puddling furnace. 

BULLER, BULDER, to gush out as a spring gushes, to 
bubble, to boil up. Hence applied to a voluble gush of 
words, a tumult of tongues, an uproar. A local revivalist 
preacher in Northumberland expressed himself thus : " When 
aa startid to speak aa was lost ; but when the spirit moved 
me at last, the words cam bulletin oot." 

BULLET, a round sweetmeat, like a bullet. 

BULL-FACES, the grass, Aira caspitosa ; called also bull- 
fronts, buff-fronts, bull-snouts, and winnel-strae. 

BULL-GRASS, the brome grass, Bromus mollis, L. ; called 
also goose grass. 

BULL HAAS, haws, the fruit of the hawthorn, when of large 
size. See Cat Haas. 

BULL-HEED, a firebrick, wider at one end than the other ; 
measuring gin. long by4jin. at the wider or bull end, tapering 
to 2|in. wide at the narrow end, and of 2^in. thickness 
throughout. 

BULLOCK, a steer of at least a year old. 

BULLOCK, a variant olfullock, which see. 

BULLOCKER, the largest sized marble used in boys' games. 

BULLOCKS' TONGUE, the harts tongue fern, Scolopendrium 
vulgare. 

BULL-PYET, bull's pate; a tuft of coarse grass among the 
finer meadow grasss. Bull-faces, bull-fronts, and buff-fronts 
are various names used for tufts of coarse grass. 

BULLS, the heavier bars of a harrow, as distinguished from 
the lighter crossbars, or sheth. 



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no NORTHUMBtRLAND WORDS. 

BULLS-AND-COWS, " lords and ladies," the flowers of the 
Arum maculatum. Also called Lam-lahcns. 

BULL-SEG, an imperfectly castrated ox. 

BULL'S-EYES, large lozenges made of toffey, and flavoured 
with mint. 

BULL-TROOT, a large fine species of fish peculiar to 
Northumberland, and much esteemed. The larger kind of 
salmon trouts taken in the Coquet are in Newcastle market 
called hull trouts ; but these fish are much larger than salmon 
trouts in the head, which is a part generally admired for its 
smallness. 

" Bilhope Braes for bucks and raes, 
And Carit Haugh for swine, 
And Farras for the good hull trouts 
If he be taen in time." 

Old Rhyme.— Broehett. 

It is the Salmo eriox. "Bull trout, among us in Northomberland, 
from its great size." — Turner, 

BULLY, equivalent to brother; a mate, a comrade. The 
crew of a keel are always called ** the bullies'^ 

" The bullies an' pee-dee a* huddled together, 
Yen an' a did agree it was torrible weather." 

Song, The Devil, or the Nanny Goat, 

*' Keel-bullies is a term used for this species of watermen ; bullies is also 
a common appellation among the people concerned in the coal works for 
brothers." — Brand, Hist, of Newc^woX. ij., 1789, p. 261, note, 

** Four or five days before Ripley died, he went to see him, and heard 
Agnes say to him, * Bullie, thou hast given thy silver whistle and chain 
to Leonard Hark, but I trust thou shaJt live to wear it thyself." — ^Trial 
of 1584, Richard Welford's Hist. ofNewc., vol. iii., p. 19. 

BULLY, the bullfinch. See Booly. 
BULRUSHER, a bulrush. 

BUM, to make a humming or drumming noise like a bee, or 
bumler ; also to spin a top. " The soon*s bummin in my ears." 
To drive violently or hurriedly. •* They were bummed oot.*" 
♦* Hadaway bum yor top." 

•* In bye they bum'd me in a crack." 

Piiman*s Pay, pt. ii., v, 35. 

" After they bumm'd us round aboot, 
For a' the world like a teetotum." 

Pitman*s Pay, pt. ii., v. 30. 

" The travellers i* thor whirligigs bummin,** 

T. Wilson, Stanzas, 1824. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. Ill 

BUM, a sheriff's officer who distrains, or takes possession. 

'* There was Preston, the bailifif, Joe Craggs was his bum" 

Song, Limbo. 

BUMBAZED, bamboozled. See Baze. 
BUM-CLOCK, a flying beetle. 

BUMMEL, a bungle. 

" They made sic a bummel wi' sail and wi' line, 
That they varry nigh cowpt thorsels inti the Tyne." 

Song, The Kulman's Stick. 

BUMMER, the driver of a carriage or gig. In former times 
commercial travellers were all gigmen, or hummers, 

" A road for horse— a road for post — 
And yen for a' the bummers." 

Thomas Wilson, The Oilin' o' Dick/s Wig, 1826. 

BUMMLER, a large fly, a bee. «' A bummle bee** is the humble 
bee. " He hummed the tune like a hummler iv a rose bush," 
said of a minister who had attempted to raise a tune. 

BUMMLEKITE, BUMMLERSKITE, the blackberry, the 
fruit of the bramble, Rubus fruticosus. See Black- bow- wowers. 

** The fruit is vulgarly known in the district by the name of bumble- 
hyte, from its being supposed to cause flatulency when eaten in too 
great a quantity. No knowledgeable boy will eat these berries after 
Michaelmas Day, because the arch-fiend is believed to ride along the 
hedges on the eve of that great festival, and pollute everything that 
grows in them, except the sloes, by touching them with his club foot. 
The same notion prevails further North, where the bramble-berries are 
odled lady's garter berries." — W. Brockie, Legends and Superstitions , 
p. 115. 

BUMMLER-BOX, a small house; an old square bed with 
sliding panels in front. 

BUMP, to drive against. '< He humped his heed again the top 
an* myest felled hissel.*' 

BUMP, a knock, a blow, the swelling or lump caused by a 
blow. ^*Bump against,** to fall or drive against with violence. 

" The laddie ran sweatin, ran sweatin, 
The laddie ran sweatin aboot, 
Till the keel went bump agvenst Jarrow, 
An' three o' the bullies (ap oot." 

"Little Pee Dee.*'— Allan's Collection, p. 194. 



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112 NORTHUMBERLVND WORDS. 

BUN, BUND {p.p. of hini)^ bound. " He wis hun apprentice 
tiv a cairtwright." " Aa*s hun to gan the morrow," or " Aa's 
tied ti gan the morrow." Compare New Eng, Diet., Bound, 
ppl. fl*. In the present tense the i is short in bind^ find^ &c., 
and sounded like the i in tin. 

" Another lang and slavish year 

At last aw fairly struggled through ; 
Gat fettled up a set of gear — 
Was thought a man — and bun to hew." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. 73. 

BUN, ready to start. " Where are ye bun for, Jackey ?" 

BUN, a hare or rabbit's tail. 

BUNCH, to strike, to drive with the knee against the backside. 

BUNCH-BERRY, the fruit of the Rubus saxatilis, of which the 
country people often make tarts. — Brockett. 

BUNG, to close up. ** The cundy's bung'd up wi* clarts.'* " He 
gat sic a bat it bung'd his eye up." 

BUNG, a worthless person. It is very usual to call a person 
** a lazy bung,'' " an idle bung,'* 

BUNS, bounds. ** He's oot o* the buns:' 

BUNTIN, the cone of a fir tree. ** To pepper buntins,*' is to 
throw huntins in play. 

BUNTON, a piece of squared timber. The rafts of squared 
timber lying by the river side were always called ** the 
buntms.'' 

'* Transverse pieces of wood placed in shafts to which the guides for 
the cages are attached."— Greenwell, Glossary, 1888. 

" In timbering the shafts of coal mines bunions and sheets are put in 
for the purpose of conducting the cages up and down the shafts."— John 
Rowell. correspondent Weekly Chronicle, May 22, 1886. 

" It. p^ for one hunting and two sparres to a yeat (gate) and the makeing 
it, 4s. 4d." — Gateshead Church Books, 1633. 

BUR, the hooked seed vessel of burdock. 

BUR, the chock placed behind a crowbar and used as a 
fulcrum. 

" Raised by levers and burs on rollers up an inclined plane."— Hodgson. 
Hist. 0/ Northumberland, pt. ij., vol. 3, p. 276. 

BURDEN-BAND, a hay-band or rope, more commonly called 
a plet'band. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. II3 

BURGHER and ANTI-BURGHER, names, imported from 
Scotland, of the two early secessions from the Church of that 
land. (Obs.) 

There are in Newcastle, " six congregations of Presbyterians, properly 
so called, united in doctrine, discipline, and communion with the 
Church of Scotland ; and one of each of the classes of the secession 
from that church, stiled Burghsrs and Anti-Burghers" — Impartial Hist, of 
Newcastle, 1801. 

BURN (pronounced horn), a brook. This word is of importance 
in its contrast with its synonym heck, which is the charac- 
teristic name in Cumberland and in the North- Riding of 
Yorkshire. Mr. J. V. Gregory {Arckaologia y^liatta, vol. ix., 
p. 63) counts in Northumberland the occurrence of bum 
upwards of 150 times, and of beck once only — the Wansbeck ; 
and in Durham burn occurs 74 times, whilst beck, as applied 
to brooks, is found 63 times. (Arckaologia AEliana, vol. x., 
P* 1 73') " The most northern heck is Wascrow beck, which 
flows from the north of Wolsingham into the Wear at that 
place. Not one beck belongs to the basin of the Tyne.** ** No 
burn really gets so far south as the Tees itself." {The 
same, p. 181.) This test word indicates the probable southern 
limit of Bernician, or non-Danish Northumberland — for 
beck is Danish or Norse — " More frequent in the Norwegian 
than in the Danish region." (Isaac Taylor, Words and Places, 
6th ed., p. 106.) Burn, on the contrary, is a common 
Teutonic term. Mr. Gregory's conclusion is — "that the 
County of Durham is the Northern limit of any important 
Danish settlements in the East side of England." {A rchaologia 
/E liana, vol. x., p. 180.) The change of dialect which marks 
off Shields and Sunderland from the folk-speech of the people 
adjacent is further suggested as indicative of a race differ- 
ence. {** Permian People of North Durham," A rchaologia y^liana, 
vol. x., p. 93.) In the western part of the county of Durham 
the mark between the burn and the heck is sharply defined. 
*' The mountain range from Bumhope Seat, at the western 
confines of Durham, eastward to Paw Law Pike, forms the 
division between the parishes of Stanhope in Weardale and 
Middleton-in-Teesdale. The principal tributaries of the Tees, 
on the south side of this ridge are becks, whilst those on the 
Wear side are burns.** (W. Morley Egglestone, Weardale 
Names of Field and Fell, p. 12.) See Beck and Born. 

BURN-BANK, the bank which margins a burn. It is the 
name of one of the filthiest alleys in Newcastle; a place once 
the bank side of Pandon burn. 



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114 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BURN-GULLY, a term of derision. Formerly, and in living 
memory, country blacksmiths were the principal makers of 
edge-tools used in husbandry, such as axes, hedge knives, 
gullies, &c., and many of them attained to great proficiency in 
the art of tempering steel. Others, again, not proficient in 
their attempts at the business, burnt the temper out of the 
steel, and consequently spoiled their work, and were called 
in derision ^^ burn gullies" In course of time the phrase 
extended to inefficient workmen in other trades. 

BURNSIDE, the side of a burn. 

BURNT. See Brunt. 

BURN-THE-BISCUIT, a boys' game. 

BURR (pronounced bor), the sounding of the letter r by a strong 
tonsil breathing, as distinguished from the palate r of the 
south, and the *' tip-tongue-trill" of the letter as heard in 
Scotland. It is the guttural sound which strikes a stranger 
as the distinction in the Northumberland folk-speech. 
" People nor town should I have known 
Had I not heard the Burr.'* 

The line within which the burr is spoken may be said to 
coincide with the county of Northumberland, but it passes 
north of the Tweed at Berwick, and over into the county of 
Durham on its north centre. On the Cheviots it is 
replaced by the Scottish r. A little to the west of Bardon 
Mill it gives way to the trilled r. At Sunderland and 
South Shields an absence of the strong r marks off a dialect 
difference which is most noteworthy. The bor from the 
Northumbrian throat is an intensification, not an elision of 
the r sound. See R. 

BURR AN, a haidgeT—Yetholm. 

***Barean,' ^Barend* and ^Borron' — a well known word in North of 
England, a rocky slope, or hill, where foxes and badgers burrow. It 
ranges at least as far south as Kettlewell, where it appears as ' Borrance,* 
the stony screes below the limestone girdles or cliffs. It is also called 
' Burrattf' and among the Yetholm gipsies, ' Burran* means a badger." — 
Jos. Lucas, Nature, vol. xxxvi.. No. 928, p. 339, ist col., Aug. nth, 1887, 

BURR-TREE, the elder-tree. See Boor-tree. 

BURTON-CHINE, a chain made of very good iron, used in 
lowering and hoisting the masts of keels and wherries. 

BUS, a bush. ** A whin bus,*' ** A corrin bus" ** A grozer bus,'' 
&c. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. II5 

BUS, a sunken rock, on which at very low tides the long sea- 
weed is visible, like a bush ; hence, probably, the name. 
** Bondicar bus,'' " Pan bus,'' *♦ Togston bus. 

BUSE, a stall, as a cow-buse, a hsiy-buse. See Boose. 
BUSHEL-IRON, scrap iron. (Obs.) 

BUSHMENT, an ambushment. (Obs.) 

" After which so doone, and the bushment and f array met." — Eaxl of 
Northumberland, letter to Henry VIII., from Berwick, Nov. 20th, 1532, 
in D. D. Dixon's Vale of Whittingham, p. 12. 

BUSK, to get ready, to dress. " Aa*ll just busk mesel an gan.'* 
"He's weel busJdt," he is well dressed. **Aa*ll busk a troot 
flee." See Buss. 

" When the fields busk their spring time attire." 

R. Roxby, Poetic Epistle, 1845. 

" Rise up Josep and busk and ga, 
Maria an' thi child al-sua." 

Cursor Mundi. 

BUSKER, a professional mendicant minstrel. 
BUSKY (a variant ofbosky)^ bushy. 

BUSS, or BUSK, to dress, to don. 

•*The feathers of the woodpecker were preserved to *bus5 flies.'" — 
Rev. J. F. Bigge, in Hist. 0/ Berwickshire Naturalists' Club , vol. ix., p. 562. 

*' • Faith thoo's buss'd like any lady.' " 

Ed. Chicken, The Collier's Wedding, 1735. 

" * Smash ! Jemmy, let's buss ; we'll off 
And see Newcassel Races.' *' 

W. Midford, X.Y.Z., 1814. 

" ' For Geordy aw*d die, for my loyalty's trig, 

An* aw own he's a good leukin mannie ; 

But if wor Sir Matthew ye buss iv his wig, 

Bygocks, he wad just leuk as canny.' " 

J. Thompson, d. 1816, Canny Newcastle. 

'* * Buss*d as aw was iv a* maw best.' " 

T. Wilson, Opening of Railway, 1838. 

BUSS, a kiss. " Come gi*s a buss, ma bairn.*' 

BUSSES, hoops for the top of a cart or waggon. — HalliwelVs 
Diet. 



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Il6 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BUSSIN-THE-TYUP, dressing the tup. The tup was the 
last corf of coals drawn out of the pit on the last day of the 
year ; and by way of showing their pleasure at the gaudy- 
days now commencing, the pitmen covered it with burning 
candles. 

" The lads beg, borrow, and steal candles for the occasion." — Note to 
Pitman" s Pay, 1843. 

BUSY-GAP-ROGUE. The name originally was, probably, 
bussy, that is bushy-gap, a pass abounding in bushes. Busy-gap 
is a **wide break in the ridge of basalt, about a mile from 
Sewingshields. This was the pass most frequently chosen 
by the freebooters of the Middle Ages when on their 
maurading expeditions to the rich valley of the Tyne, and 
hence it acquired an evil reputation. In Newcastle formerly, 
to call a brother burgess a Busy-Gap-Rogue was to incur the 
censure of one's guild, as is attested by an entry in the books 
of the Company of Bakers and Brewers of Newcastle-upon- 
Tyne."— W. W. Tomlinson, Guide to Northumberland, 1888, 
p. 192. 

BUT, an abbreviation of holibut. On the Northumberland 
coast the turbot goes by the name of brat, 

" Holibut, called there turhot, are caught off Holy Island with the 
hook." — S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumberland , 1835, p. 210. 

BUT, outside of. ^^But and ben," outside and inside. The 
following old rhyme was used in winding yarn : — 

"Bk/ the house an' ben the house, 
In the house and out the house. 
Droon the house an' bum the house. 
An* heck that's yen." 

This was used by the spinners of yarn when forming their 
hanks on the great wheel. 

BUT AND, an old form of and. " Between the Yule but and 
the Pasch." 

" Between the night but and the day." 
An Excellent Ballad on the Sickness, S»c., of Ecky's Mare, 

by the late Bernard Rumney, BelVs Rhymes, 1812, p. 166. 

BUTCHIN', butchering. " He's started the butchin* business." 

BUTLER, a term applied in the North to a female who keeps 
a bachelor's house, a farmer's housekeeper. — Brockett, 3rd ed. 
" Cook, slut, and butler" a common expression applied to a 
person who does all the turns of work in a house. 
•' Butler* S'grace, without any ceremony." — Halliwell's Diet. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. II7 

BUTTERIE, the bank swallow, or sand martin.— Htj/y Island. 

BUTTER-PLATE, the spearwort, Ranunculus flammula, 

BUTTRESS, a tool used by blacksmiths to pare down a 
horse's foot, 

BUTTS. Before the commons were enclosed, the holdings in 
land consisted of scattered strips under tillage. As dis- 
tinguished from a hutt^ a gored piece was a piece of land 
running off to a point, wedged in, as it were, between two 
strips. In Northumberland, gored pieces are sometimes called 
butts. So also are narrow detached strips. 

" Where the strips abruptly meet others, or abut upon a boundary at 
right angles, they are sometimes called butts.** — The English VUlage 
Community, by F. Seebohm, p. 6. 

" Sam-casts, rigs, butts , and doles of land." — Hodgson*s Northumberland, 
iii., 2, p. 90. 

" On back fbalk) of Gudeland joyning one with ye but, ye but beeing 
on ye west side." — The same, pt. ij., vol. i., p. 92, note. 

" The six butts.**— Survey of Old Bewick, 1680, Bks. Club, vol. v., p. 255. 

BUZZARD, a coward. ** What a buzzard — freetened o* the 
dark." 

BUZZOM, the bosom, the breast. " Wiv a posy in her 
buzzom." 

BUZZOM, a besom, or broom. Buzzom-shank is a broom 
handle. " To hang out the buzzom^*' to invite friends during the 
wife's absence from home. The ancient sign of an inn was 
a projecting pole, with a tuft, which gave it the appearance 
of a besom. Hence the phrase to **hing oot the buzzom" is 
an invitation to bachelor friends and a sign of good cheer 
within. A broom at the masthead indicates that a ship is for 
sale. 

" An wor Dick, that leeves ower by High Whickham, 
Heil myek us broom-buzsoms for nowse." 

W. Midford, d. 1851, Pitman's Courtship. 

BUZZOM, a simpleton. " Thoo greet buzzom" or " He's as 
fond as a buzzontj** are very common expressions. 

BWOARN. bom. 

•• Aw ken weel eneugh when he was bwoarn.**—T, Bewick, The Howdy, 
&c., p. 9. 



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Il8 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

BY, beside, near to. It is used in combination, as Inby, Ootby^ 
Owerby, Back^/, Forby, Vpby, Dooni^. Inby is further in, 
or inside ; in a pit it is in from the shaft. Ootby is just 
outside, or in a pit it is the direction towards the shaft or 
exit. Owerby is just across ; Bsickby just behind ; For^ is 
in addition to ; Upby is just up the street or road ; and 
Doonby is just down the way. In all these, close neighbour- 
hood is suggested. 

" Paide to John Carr, j)ost, for keeping horses for iy^-poste. Paide 
to Mr. Dente, for keepeing the 6y-booke of the rente of Gateshead and 
Whickham, 5Z." — Newcastle Municipal Accounts^ October, 1593. 

The ^^-post is the local post, and the by-hodk is the local, 
or borough, or town book of accounts. 

By, as a suffix in place-names, elsewhere so common 
in the districts of later Norse settlements, is not foimd in 
Northumberland. Ton and ham are, on the other hand, found 
throughout. 

BY'D, by it. " Stand by'd;' stand by it. 

BYE, the line from which each player first shoots in a game at 
marbles. 

BYEAKIE, the upright portion of a wooden cattle band 
formerly in use. It was attached by a loose joint to a bent 
wooden band called a ** frammelt." See Baikie-stick. 

BYE-BOOTINS, BYE-BOLTINGS, or SHARPS, the finest 
kind of bran. 

BYE-COMMON, more than common or ordinary. 

BYEN, a bone. 

BYEN-FIRE, a bonfire. From similarity of sound the word 
occurs at Winlaton as bum-fire. Until about 1878 the burn-fire 
was annually lighted there on the 29th of May. Its trans- 
ference from Midsummer to Royal Oak Day at this place is 
worthy of note. See Bone fire. 

BYER, BYRE, a cow-house. *'The mucking o' Geordie's 
l^rer 

BYEST, a brand or tar mark on sheep or cattle. 

BYEST, BASTE, BUIST (pronounced byest), to mark cattle 
or sheep with tar. After clipping, each sheep is byeasied, 
either with its owner's initials, or with some distinguishing 
device. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. II9 

BYET, work left undone. 

" If aw sud get maw wark ower suin, 
She's flaid te deeth aw've left some byet.*\ 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, ed. 1872, p. 10. 
" Leaving ' some byet ' means he has not completed his day's work, or 
hewed the number of corves placed him by the overman." — Note to above, 

BYETH, both [T.], BEYETH [S. and N.] . 
" There's be nouse aw winnot de — 
To myek ns byeth a happy hyem." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. iii., v. 58. 

BYGANE, ago. 

" Mony years bygane."—G. Stuart, Joco^Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 36. 

BY- HAND, settled, or aside. 

BYKE, BEE-BYKE, a wild bee's nest. See Bike. 

BY-M-BY, bye-and-bye. 

BYSEN. See Bizen. 

BY-SONG, or BY-SANG, often MAA-SANG, an exclamation. 
^^ By-sang! thor'd a been a bonny wark, if aa hadn't getten 
there." 

BYSPELT, a strange, awkward figure, or a mischievous 
person . — Brockett. (Obs.) 

BYUK [T.] , BEYUK [S. and N.] , a book. Often spelt bulk or 
buick in local writings. 

" Aa liked a ballant or a buick." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. iii., v. loi. 

BYUN, above, beyond. Variously used as a byun, bcyun. ** It's 
byun a joke " — it is beyond or too much of a joke. 

BYUT, to-boot, a boot. See Beyut. 

CAA, CAW, a tin pail. 

CAA (/.^, caa'd ; p, part,, caan)^ to call. "Give him a caa.'' 
Also to abuse or call names. ** He caa'd us ivvorything." 
See Caal, 4 and 5, 

CAA, to drive, to propel. **Gi's a bit caa o' the giunstan" — 
said by a man having an axe to grind. "To ffla-tee" is to put 
to, to close, to shut. "Cflrt-tee the yett." "Caa-oot," drive 
out. "Coa-in," drive in. "Caa the yows oot bye." "Caa 
in that nail." 

** Ca Hawkie. ca Hawkie, 

Ca Hawkie through the watter. 
Hawkie is a sweir beast, 
An* Hawkie winna wade the watter." 

Old Song. 



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120 KORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CAAD, COULD [T.] , CALD, CAULD [N.] , COAD [W.T.] , 
cold. ** Caad'Comfort" cold-comfort ; ** Caad-deed" stone dead, 
or cold and dead. To*' catch caad** is used ironically for 
what is known as " getting into hot water." 

"If cau'd deed ye'd freeten'd wor skipper, se brave, 
We'd myed ye te follow his byens to the grave." 

W. Midford, The Bewildered Skijfer, i8i8. 

CAADISH, coldish, somewhat cold, but generally spoken 
caadrif, 

CAAD-PIE, CAWD-PIE, any accident happening to the 
train or carriage (in a pit). — Gloss, to Pitman's Pay, 

" Sic thsn was the poor putter's fate, 
Wi' now an' then a stannin fray, 
Frae yokens, caw'dpies^ stowen bait. 
Or cowpt corves i' the barrow way." 

T, Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v. 55. 

CAADRIF, CAWDRIFE, chilly, shivering, or cold. 

*• Tha faither, Ned, is far frae weel, 
He lucks, poor body, verra bad : 
A* ower he hez a cawdrije feel, 
But thinks it's but a waff o* cawd." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i , v. 95. 

CAA-HANDED. CAW-HANDED, or CAR-HANDED, left- 
handed. 

CAAKER, the iron plate on a clog or shoe heel ; the heel of a 
horse-shoe. 

CAAKER, or CORKER, an astonishing statement, meaning a 
** stopper." ** That's a caalcer^ Geordy I " 

CAAL, need. ** What caal had ye to come there at all ? *' 

CAAL, the movement of water driven by the wind on its 
surface. ^'Call of the sea." Compare Caa, 3. The contrary 
phenomenon (smooth oily surface of the water) is known as a 
keld on the Tyne. 

CAAL, a mill dam. " He was fishin below the caall, and 
tumbled into the wettor." The "cfl//-heed"is the topof a weir 
or dam crossing a stream. The dam is sometimes called a 
"trtd-back." 

CAAL, CO A [W.T.] , to call. "Thoo tyeks a vast o* caalin on " 
— you are long in responding to my call. To abuse. ** She 
did nowt but caal us." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 121 

CA AL, to announce, to publish. '* Get the bellman to caaVd^ 
^^Caalitt the fair." ^*Caal at church," to have the banns 
published. To name. " They caal her Bella, efter her aunt." 

•• Nowt else was wan tin' but the priest 
To call us, and to tye the knot." 

T. Wilson, The Pitmm's Pay^ 1829, pt. iii., v. 71. 

CAALER, caller. An official at a colliery engaged to call up 
the men for work. •* He makes his first round at half-past 
twelve a.m., and knocks at all the doors with D chalked on 
them. Those are the deputies' houses ; they go to work an 
hour before the hewers. Every man of the fore-shift marks 
I on his door — that is the sign for the caller to wake him 
at that hour. The hewer fills his tubs, and continues 
alternately hewing and filling. Meanwhile, the caller having 
roused the putters, drivers, and off-handed men, the pit 
*hings on/ that is, starts work at five o'clock." (Dr. R. 
Wilson, "Coal Miners of Durham and Northumberland" Transac- 
tions of Tyneside Naturalists' Field Club, vol. vi., pp. 203-A.) 
In pit villages several figures may be seen chalked on the 
doors. Each figure represents one slumberer to be caaled. 
Hence 2 2 on a door means two persons to be roused at 2 
o'clock ; 3 3 4, that two are to be called at 3 o'clock and one 
at 4, and so forth. The coaler not only knocks, but waits till 
each worker has presented himself at the door, to show that 
his calling has been an effectual one. In former times the old 
caaler would cry, " Robin Winship 1 a-ho ! i' the neam o' God, 
rise and come to your wark." In one of the Tyneside 
melodies Edward Corvan gives poetry to the voice of the 
caaler, 

•• Why sweet slumber now disturbing. 
Why break ye the midnight peace, 
Why the sons of toil perturbing ? 
Have their hours of rest to cease ? 

Ho 1 marrows, 'tis the Caller cries. 

And bis voice in the gloom of the night mist dies. 
The twinkling stars, through night shade peering, 

Blink above with heavenly light 
On the sleeping world, as a voice calls clear, 

In the stilly air of the sable night. 

Ho 1 marrows, 'tis the Caller cries. 

The collier sleeps, e'en now he's dreaming 
Of a pure bright world and loved ones there, 

He basks in the rays of fortune beaming 
In some far land full and fair. 

Ho I marrows, 'tis the Caller cries." 



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122 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CAALER, an auctioneer. The only auctioneer in Reedwater 
for many years was one Jock Brown, who was always known 
as "Jock the Coaler" 

CAALIN-COURSE, the time at which the men are called to 
go to work. 

•• Aw thought the time wad ne'er be gyen, 
That callin-coufse wad never come ; 
And when the caller call'd at yen, 
Aw'd getten neither sleep nor slum." 

T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1827. pt. ii., v. 13. 

CAAN {p, part, of caal)^ called. " He's caan Bobby efter his 
granfetner." "Aa wis caan back hyem agyen.** See Caal, 
4 and 5. 

CAAS, cause ; also the sound of the plural of calf^ for calves. 
<< It's been the caas o' aa the fash." *Caas and 'cas are also 
abbreviated forms of because. 

CAASEY (the pronunciation of causey), a way, a causeway. 
•* Causey Bank," Newcastle. ** Keep on the tfla5^^ aal the way ; 
the road's se dorty." See Causey. 

CAATION, caution. " It's a caation noo." " He's a caation " — 
that is, a spectacle, something extraordinary. A ^^ caation- 
board " in a pit, is a board set up to warn the men of the 
condition of the mine beyond it. 

CAB, GOSH-CAB, or GO-CAB, exclamations of obscure 
meaning. See Exclamations. 

CABBISH, a cabbage. 

" Ye*ll be sayin' 'at coal's nowt but cabbish staaks and tatie peelins." — 
Geordy's Last, 1878, p. i. 

CABBISHIN, CABISON, a strong halter, purposely made to 
lead about young horses when first broken in. See Kabbishin. 

CABIN, a wooden shelter house, store house, or watchman's 
hut. 

•• Where aall the twisty, twincy, bad-tempered aad beggors comes frev 
'at gets putten inti cabins beats me ! '^—Geordy's Last. 

CABLE, or CAVEL, a stripe or share of land apportioned 
by lot, or kyevcl ; hence cable, as it is commonly spelt in 
documents ; ** the cables'' in field names. See Cavel. 

CADE, or KYED, the sheep louse. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I23 

CADGE, an anchor. See Kadge, Kedge. 

CADGE, to carry. ** Where are ye cadgin the box te ? '* ** He 
cadged the poke aall the way on ov his back." To beg. 
" Aa'll cadge a match off him." ** Here*s a chep come to 
cadge " — applied to a beggar. 

CADGER, •* a person who goes from house to house purchasing 
butter, eggs, fowls, &c., and takes them for sale. A higgler, 
a huckster." (Hodgson MS,) A carrier. For the carriage of 
coals about a.d. 1605, there were employed " the cadgers and 
wayne-men, where coals are not carried by water," (Brand, 
1789, Hist, of Newc.y vol. ij., p. 22, wo^^.^ ** Cadgers^ before the 
union, were the chief agents in carrying on the commercial 
intercourse between the two kingdoms." (Rev. A. Hedley, 
Archaologia ^liana, vol. i., p. 249.) "Like gentlemen ye 
maunna seem, but look like corn-cadgers ga'en the road." 
(Jock 0' the Syde.) •* Where few but cadgers wi* their cairts till 
noo hev iver been." (T. Wilson, Opening Newcastle and Carlisle 
Railway^ 1838.) " Before the special application of cadger to 
one who bought and carried corn, &c., the term appears to 
have been used for any carrier of merchandise." (Richard 
Welford, Hist, of Newc, vol. iii., p. 171.) Nowadays a cadger 
is used only as the name for a beggar. Compare with Badger. 

" Respect to Quality was lost. 
Tinkers and Coblers nil'd the rost ; 
The Nobles were the Common's Cadgers ; 
The Gentry but the Soldiers' Badgers ; 
And sae far'd we, fra ill to worse, 
When Cart was set before the Horse.** 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 36. 

CADGY, hearty, cheerful, merry, especially after good eating 
and drinking. — Brockett, 

CAFF, chaff, the husk of oats. "A caff bed" was the common 
kind of bed in use where feathers could not be procured. 
Figuratively, any light thing. 

*'AIs fyre that caffe son may bryn.'*--Hampole, d. 1349, Pricke of 
Conscience (Morris), line 3148. 

*' Scrimp meals, caff beds, and dairns."—T. Thompson, d. 1816, The 
New Keel Row. 

" Wi' pleasure aw was ower the muin, 
A' else wis caff And sand to mine." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 63. 

CAG, a small cask, a keg. See Kag. 



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124 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CAGE ; in a coal pit, " A frame of iron which works between 
slides (called guides) in a shaft, and in which, since the substi- 
tution of tubs for corves, the tubs of coal are drawn to the 
surface, and all passage in the shaft carried on." (Green well, 
Coal Tfodt Terms, 1849.) The cage in its modern form 
consists of three or four stories or stages, into each of which 
two tubs are run. The whole structure is slung from the 
winding rope attachment by "cage-chains," which are unitedby 
a large centre link, from which they depend, to the attachment 
at each corner of the cage. The ascending and descending 
cages are steadied by "cage-shoes," which clasp the "guides" 
at each side. The "cover," or "top," is a sheet-iron shield, 
which roofs the cage. The tubs are held in their places by 
the "sneck," a simple bolt passing through the top of each 
floor, with projecting revolving catches at each end, which 
are turned down as the tubs are passed on. At the top of 
the shaft the cage is received and supported by "keps," 
catches which yield to the upward passage, but which fall 
outward immediately, and form projecting rests, on which 
the cage stands whilst the full tubs are being removed and 
replaced by empty ones, as each floor in turn is made to pass 
and rest on the "keps." At the bottom of the shaft the 
structure descends into the " cage-hole," where its various 
stages are relieved in turn of the empty tubs, and refilled 
with laden ones. 

CAGMAG, coarse, bad food; as an old goose, an inferior 
sheep. 

CAGUM, a "fair round belly." "He's puttin on a canny 
cagum " — that is, growing stout. 

CAIN-AND-ABEL, the early purple orchis, Orchis inascula, 

CAINGE, to whine, to grumble. 

CAINGEL, a crabbed fellow. — Brockett, 3rd ed. 

CAINGY, cross-tempered. See Kaingy. 

CAIRD, a tinker— Norikumberland.—Halliweirs Diet. 

CAIRD, a card. Also a wool card, formerly used for preparing 
the wool for spinning into yam. 

'• Harder cairds than wors to play." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. 62. 

CAIRDER, a wool comber. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I25 



CAIRDER, a card player. 

" He laughed and joked and ran the rig 
Just like a cairder wi' the ace." 

T. Wilson, Pitman*5 Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 69. 

CAIRDIN MILL, a woollen mill. 

CAIREEDGE, a carriage. 

CAIRN, the harvest. •* The cairn-supper:* '• The cairn-hshhyr 
See Kairn. 

CAIRN, a churn. See Kairn. 

CAIRT, a cart. Compare Cowp-cairt and Lang-cairt. 
'* Cadgers wi* their cairis.** 

T. Wilson, Opening Newcastle and Carlisle Railway, 1838. 

CAIRT-AIXTREE, a cart axle. 

CAIRTER, a cartman. 

CAIRT-LIMMERS, cart shafts. 

CAIRT-REET, a cartwright. 

CAIRT-SHILVINS, the loose side boards of a farm cart. 
See Shilvins. 

CAIRT-SPURRINS, the ruts made by the wheels of a cart. 
See Spurlin. 

CAITIFF, a cripple.— Brockett. (Obs.) 

CAKE, to cackle as a goose does. 

CAKE-CREEL, a rack at the top of a kitchen to dry oat 
cakes. — Brockett, 3rd ed. 

CALF-LICK, a straight tuft of hair growing up above the 
forehead ; differing from a coo-lick, which is a tuft on the 
crown. 

CALF-YAIRD, the home of one's youth. The Northumber- 
land man always looks back with tender regard to his '' caff- 
yaird^' the dwelling-place of his infancy. 

•• Wor calf-yard, yence thought poor and bare, 
To wealth and honour risen." 

T. Wilson, OfViV 0' Dicky's Wig, 1826. 
•• Aw've learn*d to prefer my awn canny calf-yaird; 
If ye catch me mair fra't ye'll be cunnin." 

Thos. Thompson, d. 1816, Canny Newcastle. 



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126 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

GALLANT, a young man. 

" Ye collier callants, so clever, 
Residing 'tween Tyne and the Wear." 

Collar's Pay Week, 1801. 
** Nyen but verra clever callants 
Could learnin's leather mount se hie." 

Thos. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 104. 

It is also applied to a loose fellow : — 

" Gang seek your callands" — G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 64. 

CALLEEVERING, flying wildly or actively about. 
*^ Calleevering over the hills." "A wild calUeveritig youth."— 
Hodgson MS. "Come inti the hoose an' divent stop there 
caleevtrin on." 

CALLER {a short), fresh, cool. This word is very familiar in 
the street cry, " Here's yor caller harrin, here's yor bonny 
fresh harrin." " Let's hev some caller air." ** It's a fine caller 

** Gie me Cairter*s caller spring." 

T. Wilson, Carter's Well, 

CALLER. See Caaler. 

CALLET, to scold. ** A calletin housewife" is a pert, saucy, 
confirmed scold. — Brockett. 

CALLS. Some of the calls to the animals on a farm are as 
follow: Wkite-hoddy, or Gandy-gandy, a call to geese; Htck- 
hick to ducks ; Chuck-chuck to hens ; Poa-poa to turkeys ; 
Cuff-cuff to pigeons ; Gisgis to the pig ; Sty is understood to 
mean "off to your sty"; Fy-lahe is a similar command to 
geese ; Hoof-hoof ^ or Hoavy-hoavy, or Coash-coash (always twice 
repeated), to cows ; Hup-howay to urge on. In speaking to a 
horse a peculiar noise is made something like Fwyee, or Fwyee- 
ah-ha ; Whoa, or Woa, is stop ; Heck^ or Hite, or Hye, go to the 
left, or the side on which the man walks when afoot alongside 
his horse ; Gee is go to the right. In urging a dog to drive 
cattle away, Fy nout is very often used. A cry of encourage- 
ment to a dog is Hone-lad. 

CALLUST, hard to the touch. See Kallust. 

CALM-PENCIL, a slate-pencil made from very soft beds of 
clay-slate called cam, or calm. It is got at Great Swinburne 
Mill, says Mr. Hodgson, ** and at other places where beds of 
clay-slate have been partially baked by whin dykes." 

•• Here, too (near Housesteads), a bed of torrified limestone, with one 
of coam or pencil schist, lies diagonally in the basaltic cliff."— Hodgson's 
Northumberland, iii., 2, p. 288. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I27 

CAM {pJ, of cojne), came. "A chep cam up, ga me a freet ; 
'twas little Skipper Clark, man.** See Com. 

CAM, or KAME, the earth thrown up from a ditch on which 
the quicks for a hedge are planted ; an earthen dyke. See 
Kaim. 

" The hoonds bed a gran run, bat some o* the field bed sair tues at the 
finish gettin* ower the cams."— Description of a Hunt, 

CAM, CAMS [N.] , a mould, generally for making bullets. 

CAM, a whitish, indurated shale. ** Swinburn cam.'* See 
Calm-pencil. 

CAMMEREL, CAMBREL, a crooked stick, used by butchers 
for hanging up carcases. The hock of an animal. See 
Hangerel. 

CAMP, to race, or strive in shearing com. In the harvest-field 
the reapers were accustomed to start upon their allotted rigs, 
and the campin was the race in which one strove to finish his 
rig first. The custom was abandoned about 1872, in con- 
sequence of the general adoption of reaping machines. The 
word is also found as hemp. 

CAMPLE, to argue, to answer pertly and frowardly when 
rebuked by a superior. — Brockett, 

CAMSTARY, CAMSTEARY, KAMSTARRY, wild, 
unmanageable. See Kamstarie. 

" A gadman to take charge of the team. His iron-pointed instrument 
was made of a young mountain ash or rowan tree, which kept the 
witches away from making the cattle camsteery.'* — W. Brockie, Legends and 
Superstitions t p. 118. 

CAN, the allowance of beer claimed by keelmen. Can-money is 
the cash payment claimed by the same honest fraternity of 
" keel bullies,** instead of the former customary drink. Caw- 
house, an ale-house. 

'* Every time they load a keel of coals from the staith, or ' dyke,' they 
get a 'can,* or allowance of ale equal in value to two shillings and six- 
pence." — The Northern Tribune, 1854, vol. i., p. 210. 

" Pat by wor gear and moored wor keel, 
Then went and drank wor can." 

" IVeel may the Keel Row.'* 

Allan's Collection, p* 324. 



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128 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CANCH, a precipitous rise like a step. In a river bed or in a 
rock cutting, where the strata leave step-like projections, 
they are known as canches, 

" At Tyne Main once there was a cauncht 
And famous sport was found there. 
So long it stood— so high and staunch — 
All vessels took the ground there." 

R. Gilchrist, 1835, ''A New Song for Barge Day." 
Bards of the Tyne, p. 937. 

There are " a string oicanches from the Willows to the glass-houses on 
Blaydon Haugh, the river winding about those canches like a mill race. 
The said canches must grow worse and worse unless something be done 
to protect the channel from the action of the inflowing bums."— Nrtiv. 
Daily Chronicle, Aug. 23rd, 1887. 

** A protuberance, or certain thickness of stone to be worked open- 
cast." — Mining Gloss., Newc. Terms, 1852. 

In a thin seam of coal it is necessary to work either an upper 
or lower stratum of stone along with the coal, to give height 
to the passage way. The coal being worked first, leaves a 
steep-like projection of stone. This is a canch. Coal and 
stone are thus worked away alternately. A top canck is 
left until the *one in the "roof" is thus worked away. A 
bottom canch when the stone in the "thill" is being taken 
out. Where a slight fault or slip occurs in a bed of coal, 
the dislocation leaves one part of the seam above the other, 
the step thus formed being a canch. Here top and bottom 
canch have to be worked away to make a gradient for the 
roadway. A top canch is also called a broo (brow). 

CANDLE-BARK, a round cylindrical box, used for storing 
candles. Often called simply a bark. 

CANDLE-CREEL, a basket for storing candles. " Playing 
at candle-creel" playing at cards for candles. In early winter, 
farmers used to set off to a neighbouring rendezvous, each 
man with a creel or basket of candles. A successful player 
obtained a stock enough to serve his needs for the farm use 
throughout the rest of the winter. 

CANDLE-SIEVE, a candle with wick made of the pith of a 
rush. 

CANDYMAN, a bum-bailiff or process server; the man who 
serves notice of ejectment. As the pitman occupies his 
house in part payment of wages, it becomes necessary for 
him to vacate it, should he leave his work at the colliery. 
During "the great strike," as it is still called, in 1844, the 
war between capital and labour was carried out very bitterly, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I29 

and the men were served with notices of ejectment all round. 
To do this, the services of ** vagrom men" were impressed; 
quite a small army being necessary to enforce the disagree- 
able task. In these the pitmen recop^nised several faces that 
had been familiar to them on their pay-Saturday strolls 
through "the toon" as the itinerant vendors who called 
" Dandy-candy, three sticks a penny." Thus the term 
^^ Candyman'* became generally applied in pit villages to those 
who served and carried out notices of ejectment. 

CANGLE, to wrangle, or haggle, or make unnecessary talk 
over a thing, as to cangh with the ticket-collector at a railway 
station. 

CANKER, to rust, to blight, to inoculate with an irritating or 
poisonous substance; hence, probably, its application to a 
cross-grained or bad-tempered wretch. A tree is said to be 
cankered when it appears blighted from some cause affecting 
its growth ; or a wound that festers is cankered, and a bad- 
tempered or cantankerous man is said to be cankered. " I give 
the following," says Mr. M. H. Dand, " as an instance of the 
superstition still lingering among old people. In 1847 a 
young man in my employment was "stuck" in the shoulder 
with a pitchfork, which his mother put into the fire, and 
which she implicitly believed would burn the canker out of 
the wound, without the actual cautery." 

CAN KRIS, cankerous, vile, bad. 

" Rank bad foaks wi' cankris harts that ne'er can happy be." 

J. P. Robson, Maw Gud Wishes tiv a' Men^ 1870. 

CANNA, cannot. 

•• Ye canna say them nay, Mr. Mayor." 

Quayside Ditty, 18 16. 

CANNEL, a candle. See Candle-bark, Candle-sieve. 
" Ma tail hung lowse, IWecannel weeks." 

T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i, v. 45. 

CANNEL, gravel. A variant of channel, which see. 

CANNEL-COAL, a hard coal, which can be cut and polished 
like jet. It burns with a bright flame, like a candle. 

CANNEL-SNOT, the burnt wick of a candle. 

CANNILY, kindly, gently, softly, comfortably. "He com 
that cannily tiv us." *'Gan cannily doon the stair." ^*Aa 
hope ye may aall get cannily hyem." 



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130 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CANNINESS, kindliness, and all the virtues included in being 
canny, 

CANNON-NAIL, the nail that holds the cart body to the axle. 

CANNY, an embodiment of all that is kindly, good, and gentle. 
The highest compliment that can be paid to any person is 
to say that he or she is canny. As "home" Expresses the 
English love of the fireside, so in Tyneside and Northumber- 
land does canny express every home virtue. All that is good 
and loveable in man or woman is covered by the expression, 
•* Eh, what a canny body ! ** A child appealing for help 
or protection always addresses his elder as *^ canny man." 
** Please, canny man, gi's a lift i* yor cairt." " O, canny man, 
O show me the way to Wallington." What Northumberland 
bairn but has appealed, when punishment impended, " Please, 
canny man, it wasn't me ! " The fishwife who wishes to 
compliment her customer says, " Noo, canny-hinny^ see what 
yor buyin'." 

•• O, bonny Hobby Elliot, 
O, canny Hobby still, 
O, bonny Hobby Elliot, 
Who lives at Harlow Hill." 
The word "refers as well to the beauty of form as of manners and 
morals ; but most particularly is used to describe those mild and 
affectionate dispositions which render a person agreeable in the domestic 
siaLte."— Hodgson MS. 

** Wor canny houses, duffit theek*d — 
Wor canny wives within 'em, 
Wor canny bairns, se chubby cheek'd, 
And sweet and clean ye'U find 'em ; 
Are a* decked out in Sunday trim. 
To mense this great occasion.'* 

T. Wilson, The Oilin' o* Dicky's Wig, 1826. 
*' Gan wi' me, like a canny lad." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i., v. 71. 

It has also the following significations : Endeared : — 
" How well we remember the canny bit shop." 

R. Gilchrist, 1835, '* Song of Improvements ." 
Bards of the Tyne, p. 417. 
Modest: — 

" To get us a canny bit leevin. 

Aw kinds o' fine sweetmeets we'll sell." 

W. Midford, Pitman's Courtship, 1818. 
" What canny little wegges we used ta ha ta pay ! " 

Geo. Chatt, Old Farmer, 1866. 
Orderly, neat : — 

*' Eh, lads, but it's a bonny way ! 

But what myest pleased wor Nanny, 
Was seeing fogies, awd and gray, 
Paid just for keepin't canny." 

T. Wilson, The Oilin' 0' Dicky's Wig, 1826. 
Careful : — " Be canny wi* the sugar." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I3I 

Canny is also used adverbially, as *^ Canny, noo, canny!" 
or "Gan canny" — that is, go gently. 

•* A, U, A, maa bonny bairn, 
A, U, A, upon maa airm, 
A, U, A, thoo syun may lairn 
To say dada se canny" 

R. Nunn, d. 1853, Sandgate Wife's Nurse Song. 

" They stroked them canny , vrV the hair." 

T, Wilson, Opening Newcastle and Carlisle Railway, 1838. 

" No canny" means unhuman, as a witch or wizard. See 
note under No. 

In combination, we have canny-bit, a considerable portion of 
anything, a good deal. ** AaVe steudin* here a canny-bit " — 
I've stood here a considerable time. ** He wis a canny-bit 
aheed on us" — ^he was a good way ahead of us. Canny-few, 
a fair number. " Was thor mony at the meet in' the day ? *' 
'* Wey, a canny-few" ♦ 

" Then Gyetside Jack 

Wad dance wi' goggle-eyed Mally, O ; 
But up cam Nick, an' gav him a kick, 
An' a canny bit kind of a falley, O." 

J. Selkirk, d. 1843, Swalwell Hopping, 

CANNY-NANNY, a small species of the humble bee, dis- 
tinguished by having six stripes, commencing on the nose. 
It is so called because it is stingless. 

CANT, an angle greater than a right angle ; a sharp, sudden 
turn which upsets. The tip or turn given to a scale beam 
in weighing is called a cant. In the thrifty marketing of the 
pitman, the pound of sugar is described as ** in quarter 
pounds in order to secure four cants of the scale in weigh- 
ing.'* — T. Wilson, Note to Pitman's Pay, end of pt. i., 1843. 

•• If the tram had gi'en a cant, 'twad flung the maister oot."— T. R. V., 
A Ramble to see Sadler's Balloon, 18 z6. 

CANT, to turn on edge, to tip over, to make with a cant. 
Hexagon nuts are called canted nuts. 

CANT, to sell by auction. Hence cantin, an auction, and cantin 
caalor, an auctioneer. 

" I will yt all my goods after my deathe shalbe canted and sold at my 
foredore." — Newcastle Wills and Inventories, 1570. 

CANT-DOG, a handspike with a hook, used for turning over 
large pieces of timber. 



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132 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CANTEEN, a small wooden flat barrel, containing about half 
a gallon, in which a pitman carries water or coffee with him 
to his work. — Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms^ 1849. 

CANTER, old milk cheese. 

CANTLE, the top of the head, the crown ; the head of a cask. 

CANTLE-PIECE, that part of the end of a cask into which 
the tap is driven — Northumberland, — HalliwelVs Diet, 

CANTRIP, CANTRAP, a spell, a charm, a trick, or out-of- 
the-way performance. 

•• Where like a conjuror he'd sit, 
His black airt at some cantraps try in*." 

T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v, 46. 

CANTY, lively, cheerful, and comfortable. 

" Still Jack's an honest, canty cock, 
As ever drain'd the juice of barley.'* 

T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i., v. 90. 

" Half cock*d, an* canty, hyem we gat." 

The same, pt. iii., v. 82. 

" O, my sweet laddie, 
My canny keel laddy 
Se hansum, se canty, and free, O I'* 

H. Robson, " Sandgate Lassie* s Lament" 
Allans Collection, p. 211. 

" Upon a pin hung a silk manty 
And wily-coat (to make her canty)*' 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Disccurse, 1686, p. 50. 

CAP, to overtop, to surpass. ** This caps the stack " is a 
proverb, meaning something overtopping. " A good story 
capped'' (Geord/s Last, 1878, p. 5) — a good story surpassed. 
To put a cap or shackle on a rope. 

•• An' let wor canny townsfolk knaw 

*" ow still caps them a' 

J. P. Robson, Baiy Purvis's Bundle, 1849. 



That Billy*s show stiUjaps them a*."_ 
obs 



CAP, the blue " top " on a candle or lamp when it burns in a 
mixture of fire-damp and air, not in an explosive condition. — 
GreenwelL 

CAPES {kyeps), ears of corn broken off in thrashing, or grains 
of corn to which the husk adheres after thrashing. 

CAPHEED, a top placed upon an air-box used in sinking a 
pit, &c.,for the purpose of catching as much air as possible. — 
Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, 1849. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I33 

CAPPER, one who excels ; a story that surpasses another. 

CAPPIT, or CAP, a piece of leather sewn on a shoe to 
mend it. 

CAPPY, a boys* game, in which one stoops or gives ** a back," 
on which a cap is laid ; the players vault over, as in leap 
frog, each one resting his hands on the cap as he leaps. The 
one who first causes the cap to fall must exchange places 
with the boy who is " making a back." 

CAPPY, captain; used facetiously in colloquial address. 
" What cheer, ca//j." 

*• A dog, called Cappy^ he doated upon." — ^W. Midford, Cappy, or th$ 
Pitman's Dog, 1818. 

CAPRAVEN, probably a cap, or hood, in a framework of 
timber. 

" Capravens for trussles." "Six capravens at i6d. p)er peece." — 
D. Embleton, MS, Extracts from Barber Surgeon's Books, Newcastle. 

CAPS, hood-sheaves of corn-shocks, also called cap-sheaves, — 
HalHwell's Diet. 

CAPSHELL, the piece of iron which covers the end of the 
plough beam to regulate the breadth and depth of the furrow. 

CARE-CAKE, a kind of small cake baked with eggs, and 
eaten on Pastern's Een TShrove Tuesday). — Dr. Murray 
(car-cah)j New Eng, Diet. A blood care-cake is a thick pancake 
mixed with blood. 

CARECHIN, cheeriully— Northumberland.— Halliweirs Diet. 

CAR-HANDED, left handed. See Caa-handed. 

CARKISH, a carcase, the body. 

•• In wor huddock lie doon,keep yor au'd carkish warm." — W. Midford, 
Th§ Bewildered Skipper, 1818. 

CARL, a country fellow. 

•• Can the silly, daft carles think we'll still be fools."— G. Stuart, Joco- 
Serious Discourse, 1686. 

CARLIN, a familiar term for a woman. In G. Stuart's Joco- 
Serious Discourse , p. 14, the landlady of the inn is called " a 
carlin,'* 

" Carline, a woman, especially an old one ; often implying contempt or 
disparagement." — Dr. Murray, New English Diet. 



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134 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CARLINS, "choice grey-peas, of the preceding autumn, 
steeped in spring water for twelve or fifteen hours, till they 
are soaked or macerated ; then laid on a sieve, in the open 
air, that they may be externally dry. Thus swelled, and 
enlarged to a considerable size, and on the verge of vege- 
tating, they are put in an iron pot, or otherwise, on a slow 
fire, and kept stirring. They will then parch, crack, and, 
as we provincially call it, bristle : when they begin to burst, 
they are ready to eat." (Gentleman's Magazine^ 1788, from a 
Northumberland correspondent.) Another method adopted 
is to fry the carlins with fat, and season highly with pepper 
and salt. The second Sunday before Easter is observed as 
Carlin Sunday. A tradition associates this custom with a 
commemoration of the disciples plucking the ears of corn on 
the Sabbath day. Another associates it with a famine in 
Newcastle, which was relieved by the arrival of a ship in the 
Tyne loaded with a cargo of grey peas. The remembrance 
of their deliverance was thenceforth proclaimed by the people 
in observing a feast of carlins on the second Sunday before 
Easter. The use of carlins on this day is, however, not 
confined to the Tyneside people. The large peas of a 
brownish yellow spotted colour, called "brandlings," are 
quite different from the ordinary grey pea, and are much 
fancied and in request for carlins. 

CARLIN SUNDAY, the fifth Sunday in Lent. 

" On this day our labouring people assemble at their accustomed 
alehouses, to spend their rar/t;i^-groats. The landlord provides the 
carlings.*' — Mackenzie. History of Northumberland, 1825, vol. i., p. 216. 

CARLISH, hard, stiff; applied to ropes difficult to bend, &c. 
" He's as carlish as a piece o' bend leather." 

CARLISLE-GATE, CAREL-GATE, CAREL-STREET. 
KARLE-GATE. The old Roman roads leading through 
Northumberland in the direction of Carlisle were known as 
Carlisle-gate, Gait or Gatey a road. See Stanegate. 

" Before the year 1293, the king's justices itinerant seem to have some* 
times halted at Fourstones on their way from Carlisle to Newcastle ; and 
this way, as it passed through the neighbouring lands of Stancroft, near 
Newbrough, is evidently called Carlisle-gate (Karlelgate)," — Hodgson's 
Northumberland, iii., 2, p. 275. note c. 

" Little more than a century since, one of the names of the causey," 
from Bewclay, north of Corbridge, and north-eastward towards the 
Tweed, "was called Carlisle Causey.'* — The same. 

The Roman Wall, "With the outer parallel military way, called 
Ca'rel'Streei." — The same, p. 307. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I35 

CARR, a marsh, as Prestwick Carr, which was formerly half 
lake and half marsh. The name occurs only once in 
Northumberland — in Prestwick Carr above. 

" Carre, a hollow place where water stands." — Ray's Gloss. 

CARR, in place-names, as Bondicarr, Berling Carr, near 
Warkworth, is a rocky place. It is noted in Northumberland 
as occurring twenty times. — Mr. J. V. Gregory, Place-names 
of Northumberland, p. 63. 

•• [Old Northumbrian — carvj rock. J A rock : now specially applied to 
. insulated rocks off the Northumbrian and Scottish coasts." — Dr. Murray, 
New Eng. Diet, 

*' Sail ye near, or sail ye far, 
Keep oflf the rocks of Bondicarr.'* 

Old Rhyme. 

CARROCK, CURRICK, CURROCK, a crag, a cairn. In Mr. 
J. V, Gregory's Place-names in Northumberland its occurrence is 
noted five times ; three times as applied to inhabited places. 

CARROT-POWED, red-haired or carrot -headed. 

CART-BODY, the wooden body of a cart or waggon. Cay^arse, 
the loose end of a cart. — HdliwelVs Diet. 

CARTER-FELL, the dividing ridge between England and 
Scotland, from whence issues the river Rede. Near the 
southern extremity of the parish of Simonburn we have the 
Green-Carts and the Black-Car/5, signifying respectively the 
green heights or hills, and the black or heathy hills. — Rev. A. 
Hedley, Archaologia /^liana, vol. i., p. 254. 

CARTIES, or SARTIES, certes, surely. ''Sarties, y'or iv a 
horry." Probably for Maa Sartiet! — an exclamation. 

CAS, because. 

CASH, a soft band ; sometimes found separating one stratum 
from another ; when thin, called a cashy parting. — Greenwell, 
*' White post, with cashy partings.*' — Borings and Sinkings ^ A.B., p. 46. 

CASILTY, weakly, in doubtful health. " Hoo he' ye getten 
on wi' yor lambs thi *eer?" ''Why, thor's a lot on them 
nobbut casilty" Ray has the word " Kazzardly (adj.), cattle 
subject to die; hazardous, subject to casualties." 

CASINS, *' dried cow's dung, used for fuel." — Ray's Gloss. 

CASKIT, lunar caustic, nitrate of silver. — Dr. Embleton, MS. 



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136 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CASKIT, a cabbage stalk. See Castock. 

CASKITY, or CASKET Y, soft and sappy. Anything caskciy, 
or full of sap and easily broken, is said to be ** frush." 

CASS, to cast away, to disperse ; p, part.^ cassen. The form 
of kcst is used as past tense. 

" Like ony chicken efter moot, 
When its awd coat it fairly casses.'* 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 5. 

•• Just like cassen claes." 

T. Wilson, HumhU Petition, 1832. 

*• Now have I cassen away my ears." 

J. B. Rumney, Ecky*s Mare. 

•* Where me eyes were casssen 
It seemed as if the busy shore 
Cheered canny Tyne i* passin'." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Jimmy Jomson's Wherry. 

CASSEN, said of a sheep when cast upon its back and unable 
unable to rise. See Awelt. 

CASSEN-OOT, thrown out ; used with reference to the 
ordinary d6bris of pits, but also to natural outcrops and 
faults. Ex. — Casten-oot to the day^ cropping out at the surface. — 
Hugh Miller, Geology of Otterburn and Elsdon, — Memoir, Geolog, 
Survey, 1887. 

CAST, to cast up, to throw up. The word appears to be 
marked with its final ^ as a variant from cass, which means 
merely to disperse. Cast, on the contrary, is always distinctly 
pronounced, and is associated with the act of cutting or 
shovelling and lifting a thing; hence the expressions, "to 
cast snow," ** to cast peat," ** to cast ballast " are all connected 
with work done with a spade or shovel. Compare Cass, and 
the substantive form of the word, under Cast below. 

" A gutter cast in the Close for water." — Municipal Accounts ^ Newcastle, 
October, 1656. 

" Paide to William Graie, for looking for casting ballist into the river, 
or other rubbish." — Municipal Accounts, Newcastle, 1593. 

CAST, to twirl, or warp, applied to wood. — Brockett. 

CAST, to add up. " Castin *coonts" {Pitman's Pay)— adding up 
accounts. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 137 

CAST, a mound of earth cast up as a boundary of lands between 
different proprietors, or as a fence. It also means a long 
ditch. A worm cast is the familiar excrement thrown up in 
soil, or the sand-worm's heap thrown up on the beach. 

" The Angerton cast was the boundary between the meadow ground 
for mowing hay upon, and the Pow-burn on the tillage side of the 
Angerton grounds.'* — Hodgson MS. 

CAST, the space covered by a cast of the hand in sowing. 

CAST, a thing at wist or aslant, as " a cast in the eye." ** The 
frame-work hes getten a cast,'' 

CAST, a lift forward, as '* Gi's a cast i' yor cairt.'' 

CAST, a swarm of bees. 

CAST, a length of gut, three feet or more, used on a line in 
trout-fishing. 

CAST, CASTREY, adj.f of a very hard nature ; applied to 
strata, as ** Post girdles and cast partings," ** Hard splint or 
castrey metal." — Borings and Sinkings, C.E., pp. 20, 52. 

CASTER, a shoveller or caster of coal from a keel to a ship. 
On the Wear, and at Blyth, the casters were men who entered 
a keel when it arrived at the ship and cast the coals. Keelmen, 
casters, and trimmers were formerly distinct sets of men at 
those ports. 

CASTLEWARD, a rateable division in Northumberland. 

*' Castlewards, A tax formerly laid on those that dwelt within a certain 
distance of a castle, for the support of the garrison." — HalliwelVs Diet. 

CASTOCK, the stem of a cabbage; called also caskitdLnA kaistock. 

CAST-OUT, to fall-out or qudirr el. —Brockett. 

CAST-UP. I. To remind reproachfully or as upbraiding. 
** If aa was to de see, ye wad cast it up to me fyece." 2. To 
reappear, to turn up again." ** Hes the dog cast up yit?*' 
3. To throw off. ** They'll cast up my bairns, when Tm dead 
and gane." — Joco-Serious Discourse, Newcastle, 1686. 

CAT, a piece of soft clay moulded into the form of a mower's 
whetstone, This was thrust in between the laths, and after- 
wards "daubed," or plastered. See Daaber and Catter. 



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138 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CAT, a ball made by mixing coal and clay together. The 
**Crow coal" which is found in the extreme south-west of 
Northumberland and in Alston district burns with a foetid 
smell. To prevent the discomfort thereby occasioned, cats 
are used in the domestic hearth. Placed in a peat fire they 
soon become incandescent, producing a hot, lasting glow. 
They are sometimes called clay-cats. 

CAT, a piece of wood used in the boys' game of kitty -cat. 

CAT-BAND, an iron band passing over the cover of a hatch 
in a keel, by which it is fastened down ; it is hooked into a 
staple at one end, and locked at the other. Still in common 
use on the Tyne. Also ** an iron loop placed on the under- 
side of the centre of a flat corf bow, in which to insert the 
hook . * ' — GreenwelL 

" Paide for a cait-banJe and a staple for the dore that the priest brunte 
in prison, 6d." — Newcastle Municipal Accounts, 1593. 

CAT-BUILT, applied to an old style of shipbuilding, which 
is described as being on the Norwegian model. The stem 
was much narrowed, and the planking swept up in an 
elliptical fashion, giving a barrel-shaped appearance. The 
'< tumble in " was so considerable that a man could stand on 
the side and paint the bulwark. The last of the old cat-buHt 
ships is said to have been wrecked about 1850. The " pink " 
was a development of the model, which was superseded by 
the later type of " collier." 

CATCH, a sudden pain, a stitch. ** Aa*ve getten a catch V me 
side." 

CATCH, a sneck or hasp for fastening a door. The moveable 
checks by which tubs are held in their places in a pit cage 
are called catches. 

CATCH-DAY, a tenant's obligation. 

*' That is, to go from the lord's house with a horse-load of his goods, 
after sunrise, and return before sunset, but during that time not t^yond 
a reasonable distance." — Hodgson's Northumberland, vol. iii., 2, p. 67, 
note e ; also p. 144, note. 

CATCHED, p.t. of catch. 

" So hyem he com an catched the beast." — M. Catcheside, Ye Lamhton 
Worm, 1867. 

CATCHY, ready to find fault, or quick at playing on the 
expressions of another. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I39 

CATCHY, a child's game, in which one catches another. 

CAT-GALLOWS, a game played by children. It consists of 
two sticks placed upright, with one across, over which they 
leap in turns. — Brockett, 

C AT-H A A , the hawthorn berry ; called hull-haa when of large size, 
" Many hips, many haas, 
Many frosts, many snaas.*' 

Proverb. 

CAT-HEED, an ironstone nodule. A thin compact stratum is 
sometimes called " a girdle, or cathead^ Or these strata are 
described as ^^ cathead girdles" — that is, nodular girdles. 
Shale containing nodules of ironstone is called ^^ catheady 
metal." 

CAT HEP, CAT HIP, the berry of the Rosa spinosissima. See 
Cat-whin. 

CAT-PEASE, the fruit of the vetch, Vicia sativa. 

CATRAIL, that singular work called the Catrail, consisting of 
. a ditch with a rampart of earth on each side, which has 
been traced from the Peel-fell, between Northumberland and 
Roxburghshire, across the latter county — to Mosalee farm, a 
mile westward of Galashiels. (S. Oliver the Younger, Rambles 
in Northumberland, 1835, p. 10.) " It is frequently called the 
Picts-work ditch." (The same, p. 104.) " The course of this 
singular work, followmg it in all its windings, was upwards 
of forty-five miles. In some places the trench has been 
observed to be about twenty-seven feet broad, and the 
ramparts of earth on each side from say six to ten feet high, 
and from eight to twelve feet thick." (The same, p. 172.) '* It 
is an invented name for an invented rampart, both due to the 
imagination of Chalmers. — Caledonia, 1807." (Johnston, Place- 
names of Scotlafid, p. 60.) 

CAT'S CLOVER, the bird*s-foot trefoil, Lotus corniculatus. 
Called also craa-taes and craa's foot, 

CAT'S-COLLOP, the milt, or spleen of animals. 

CAT*S-CROP, the crop from small potatoes which have been 
left in the ground during the winter, and which spring up in 
an irregular manner in the summer. 

CAT'S-FOOT, ground \wy.— Ray's Gloss. 

CAT-TAILS, the seeding stalks of cotton-grass. See Ling. 



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140 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CATTER, an old name for a plasterer. The fraternity of 
plasterers in Newcastle were anciently styled ^^catters and 
daubers." — Brand, Hist, of Newc, vol. ij., p. 268, note. See 
Cat, I, and Daaber. (Obs.) 

CATTIS, straw much broken in threshing is termed "knocked 
aa to cattis." Cotton wadding or cotton wool put in the ear 
is called caitis. 

CAT-WHIN,burnet rose {Rosa spitwsissima), — Brockctt^ 3rd. ed. 

CAT-WITH-TWO-TAILS, an earwig. 

C AUK-SPAR, barytes. See Cawk. 

CAULDRON BOTTOMS, familiarly called cauldron-arses, cone 
shaped masses of stone occurring occasionally in the roof of 
a coal mine. They have smooth sides, and, when the coal is 
excavated below, they are apt to drop out without warning, 
and form one of the serious dangers to which the miner is 
liable. They are sometimes called pot-stones. 

CAUSEY, CAWSEY (pronounced caasey), a causeway. 
^^Cawsey Bank," in Newcastle, a street leading from City 
Road to Garth Heads, formerly paved with small cobble 
stones ; hence its name. The term is also specially applied 
to the remains of Roman paved roads in Northumberland, 
which are popularly ascribed to supernatural agency, as 
•* Cob's Cawsey,'* or "Devil's Cawsey" a branch from the 
Watling Street striking off north of the Wall. 

CAUTION-BOARD, a warning notice in a pit to caution the 
men not to proceed till instructions are given by the deputy, 
who does not permit a naked light or an unlocked safety 
lamp to be carried beyond the point indicated by the caution 
hoard. 

CAVE, to separate ; to separate with a rake and the foot the 
short straws from com. This operation is done by holding a 
rake and kicking the short straw against the teeth to separate 
the corn. See Cavins. 

CAVEL, CAVIL, a distribution by lot. Cavels are the lots 
cast by pitmen at stated periods for the different working 
places. Each collier draws his cavel, and the number on his 
ticket is the number of the ** bord " at which he must hew 
for a stated period, till another cavelling takes place. The 
word is pronounced as kyevel. Cavels are also divisions of 
land. See Cable, Kyevel, and note under Kevel. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I4I 

CAVIN, pawing, as a horse does. 

CAVINS, chaff, broken ears and siftings of corn. 

CAW, to turn, to drive. See Caa. 

CAWD, CAWTE, cross-grained in temper. "He's a cawd 
chep." ** He's tarrible cawd:' 

'* The yerlle of Huntlay, cawU and kene, 
He schall wyth the be." 

Chevy Chase. 

CAWEL, a hen-coop. 

C AWK, sulphate of barytes. 

CAWSEY, a causeway. See Causey. 

CENTRE-BAR, an iron bar in a tub or tram, passing 
underneath its body, to which the coupling -hooks are 
fastened; the bar in a pit cage carrying a falling catch at 
each end for holding the tubs in their place. 

CESS, or SESS, an assessment, or rating. To levy a rate. 
" The hoose is cessed at ten pund a 'eer." 

CEYUK [S.] , CYUK [T.] . a cook. The c is sounded hard, 
and the word is ke-yuk^ kyuk. 

" Wor geuses are A««**(?."— Tames Horsley, 1882, A Ride upon the Swing 
Bndge. 

CH AAK, chalk. To chaak up is to charge to ; from the custom 
of keeping count on a board with marks of chalk. 

•• She chalks up scores at a' the shops." — T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, 
pt. i., V. 62. 

CHAAK AN PIPECLAY, gypsum. 

CHAAKIN-DYEL, CHALKING-DEAL, the board on which 
reckonings and accounts in chalk are kept. 

CHACK, a slight refreshment taken in haste. ** Aa just had 
time to get a chack" 

CHAFEWEED, cud weed Filago Gertnanica, L. 

CHAFFS, CHAFTS, or CHAFT-BLADES, the jaws. 

*' As slyly as thy faus Chafts waggs." — G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 
1686, p. 64. 

" Aw tied his chaffs and laid him out." — R. Gilchrist, b. 1797, d. 1844* 
Blind WmU's Death. 



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142 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CHAIR-DAY, the evening of life; that period which, from its 
advanced season and infirmity, is chiefly passed in ease and 
indulgence. — Brockett, 3rd. ed. 

CHAIRGE, charge. 

" Paid to Mr. Christopher Shafto, lawier, in parte paimente of his 
chair ges, SI,'*— Newcastle Municipal Accounts, 1593. 

CHALDER, CHALDRON, in Newcastle, is a measure of 53 
cwts. of coal. The old colliery waggon contains a chaldron ^ 
and is called a chaldron waggon. Eight of these equal *' a keel 
of coals.** To hear a ship described as **of twenty keels" 
refers to the carrying capacity of the vessel. See Keel. 
" The original chaldron (of coals) was 2,000 lbs. weight. We 
accordingly find the chaldron rated in 1530 at six bolls, in 
a lease of mines at Elswick, from the Prior of Tynemouth. 
In 1600 we find "the coal waynes containing eight bolls, and 
some scarce seven bolls.** (Books of Hoastmen's Company,) In 
point of fact seven and a half bolls of coal are equal to very 
nearly 2,000 lbs. weight, per modern custom-house admeasure- 
ment. And we thus perceive how the keels were said, so 
early as 142 1, to carry twenty-two or twenty-three chaldrons; 
twenty- three chaldrons, of 2,000 lbs. weight each, being equal 
to nearly eight modern Newcastle chaldrons, of 53 cwts. each. 
If from the London chaldron, a right proportion is deducted 
for ** heaped measure,'* we shall have left almost exactly 
2,000 lbs. weight as above. (T. John Taylor, Archaology of 
the Coal Trade, 1852.) "The content ol ihe chaldron waggon 
(custom-house measurement) is 217-989 cubic inches; and 
that of the boll being 9676*8, the chaldron is therefore equal 
to 22*526 bolls, and not, as usually but erroneously stated, as 
24 bolls.** {Glossary of Coal Trade Terms, 1849.) See Boll. 
*' Item, paid to the colyeres for their Sant Thomas Chalders, at 
Chrystenmas, i2d.'* (Newcastle Municipal Accounts, December, 
1565.) The chalder was also "a measure of grain, consisting 
in general of 36 bushels.*' (Canon Greenwell, Glossary to Boldon 
Buke, sub. Celdra, Surtees Society,) Lime, corn, and even grind- 
stones were measured by the chaldron or chalder. " At the 
Bishop's Staith and Heworth Staith loi chalder of grindstones, 
£35 7S»" {Cole's Inventory, 1583. — Richard Welford, History of 
Newcastle, vol. iii., p. 17.) 

CHALLENS, CHALLENGE, to accost, to claim acquaint- 
ance. " Aa wad gyen clean past if he hadn't chalkns'd us." 
** When he challens*d us, aa says tiv him, * Ye he* the better 
on us.* '* 

CHAM*, awry. — Grose's Gloss. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS, I43 

CHANCE-BAIRN, an illegitimate child.— Brockett. 

CHANCY, precarious. Uncertain in operation, "a chancy 
horse.** 

CHANGE, or CHANGER-WIFE, an itinerant apple woman, 
or dealer in earthenware, who takes old clothes or rags in 
exchange for what she sells. 

" Cheap apples, wives 1 Cheap apples, wives ! Seek oot a' your aud 
rags, or aud shoes, or aud claise to-day" — (Newcastle Cry). — Brockett. 

CHANGER-AND-GRATHER, the man who changes and 
repairs the pumping buckets in a pit. See Graith, 3. 

CHANNEL, CANNEL, gravel; being the material of which 
the channel or bed of a river is composed. — Dr. Murray, New 
Eng, Diet. See Chinnel. 

" Sand and channel.** — Borings and Sinkings, F.K., p. 14. 

*' Sand and cannel^^The same, A.B.. p. 218. 

CHANNER, to scold, not loudly, but constantly; to be 
incessantly complaining. 

•• She keeps channer, channering all day long." — Brockett. 

*' The cock doth craw, the day doth daw, 
The channerin* worm doth chide.*' 

Wife of Usher^s Well, 

CHANTER, the fingering pipe of a bagpipe, on which the air 
is played. 

CHAPPIN, a quart. The northern form of chopin. (Obs.) 

** Send in a Chappin of your wine.*' — Joco-Serious Discourse^ Newcastle, 
1686, p. 14. 

CHAPS, the jaws. See Chafts. 

CHARE, a narrow lane. This word is in very common use in 
Newcastle as the name of narrow streets or alleys in the 
populous parts of the city. Many of these were destroyed by 
the great fire which followed the Gateshead explosion of 1854. 
In 1800, as many as twenty-one chares were found on the 
Quayside, among which were the following: — Plumber's 
Chare, Hornsby's Chare, Broad Chare, Colvin's or Colman's 
Chare, Pallister*s Chare, Peppercorn Chare, Blue Anchor Chare, 
Grinding or Grindon Chare, Goudy Chiire, Byker Chare, Dark 
Chare, Peacock Chare, Trinity Chare, Rewcastle Chare, Cox's 
Chare, Crome's Chare, Fenwick's Chare. East of the Town 
Wall, at the " old suburb of Sandgate," the word chare is of 



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144 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

less frequent occurrence, and is mostly replaced by the word 
"entry"; but formerly there existed here Thorp's Chare, 
Dent*s Chart, Errington's or Maughan's Chare^ Pearson's 
Chare, Foxton*s Chare, and, at a later date, Joiner's Chare, 
Malcolm's Chare, and Common Chare. All these were narrow^ 
lanes. The "Broad" Chare itself would admit a cart, but 
the others narrowed down to the straightest and darkest 
retreats. " Most of the chares,'' says Mackenzie, " may be 
easily reached across by the extended arms of a middle-sized 
man, and some with a single arm ; but a stout person would 
find it rather inconvenient to press through the upper part of 
this lane" (Dark Chare), The houses here almost touched 
each other at the top ; and the whole of these cJiares were 
densely packed with humanity. " It has been justly observed, 
continues Mackenzie, "that the ground occupied by these 
chares is the most crowded with buildings of any part of his 
Majesty's dominions." (Mackenzie's History of Newcastle ^ p. 
163.) In the upper town are found Manor Chare, Denton 
Chare, Friar Chare, High Friar Chare, and Pudding Chare^ the 
first-named a wide thoroughfare. In Gateshead, the lesser 
passes and avenues are, as in Newcastle, called chares, 
Oakwellgate Chare, High and Low Church Chare, St. Mary's 
Chare, Tomlinson's or Bailiff's Chare (deriving name from 
some of the ancient officers of the borough), and Jackson's or 
Collier's Chare, and Murk, or Mirk Chare, To the extinct 
topography of Gateshead belong Voiexschihera, mentioned in 
the earliest charter relative to the borough in the Durham 
Treasury (but the Rev. Canon Greenwell, who prints the 
document in his Feodariwn Prioratus Dunelmensis, thinks the 
property it grants "most probably was a part of the land at 
Cramlington held by the Prior and Convent ") ; also Walde- 
schere and ^ylotchare. At Hexham, St. Mary's Chare, the 
narrow street, now called Back Street, and Pudding Chare, 
now called Back Row. Both chares lead to the Market Place. 
They appear on the map of Hexham dated 1826. There is 
also a farm near Acomb called Chare Head. In the village 
of Whalton, Northumberland, also at Whickham, there is a 
" Church Chare,'' and in Morpeth there is a " Copper Chare," 
At Holy Island, "Tripping Chare" is found, and at the same 
place we have the name " Chare ends " or " Chare fits " given 
to the spot where three lanes converge near the landing-place 
of the oversand road. Two of these chares which end here 
are mere field roads, so that the term is not applied in all 
cases to an alley of houses. The word occurs in the neigh- 
bouring county in Sandwell Chare at Hartlepool, in Castle 
Chare at Durham, and at Bishop Auckland, where we find 
" Gaunless Chare " and " Wear Chare." In Richard Welford's 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I45 

History of Newcastle in the XIV. and XV. Centuries, p. 394, 
" Bower Chare and Gr)rpe Chare " are mentioned. •* These 
chares seem at different times to have gone by different 
names, generally being called after the owners of property in 
them, and the names changing with the owners." — R. J, 
Charleton, Newcastle Town, p. 313.) " A laughable misunder- 
standing happened at our assizes some years ago, when one 
of the witnesses in a criminal trial swore that * lie saw three 
men come out of the foot of a chare!* * Gentlemen of the jury/ 
exclaimed the learned judge, ' you must pay no regard to 
that man's evidence, he must be insane.' But the foreman, 
smiling, assured the judge that they understood him very 
well, and that he spoke the words of truth and soberness." 
{An Impartial History of Newcastle, 1801, p. 30, note,) As already 
mentioned, the worst of the Newcastle chares were destroyed 
by fire in 1854, ^"^ ^^** calamity came as the regenerator 
of a plague-stricken town. A contemporary observer thus 
regarded it : ** The elements have done their wild work in 
Newcastle ; the blocks of human habitations in the disgusting 
chares, where the sun's glorious rays never entered, and where 
cholera and typhus held revel, are swept away." {NortJtern 
Tribune, 1854, '^ol. i., p. 388.) Chare probably means, like 
the Scotch wynd, a turning. 

CHARM. The use of charms for the cure of disease and for 
warding off ills of any kind is not yet extinct : instances may 
be met with quite commonly. The horse-shoe is nailed to the 
stable door, and the ** holey-stone" is found hung on a nail on 
the inside of the door of the dwelling. There are still coins 
thirled for luck, or the small bones from a sheep's head, or a 
"raa tettie," carried in the pocket to charm off ailments. The 
forms of incantation are gone — but not lone; gone by. In a 
note to Pitnian^s Pay, edition of 1843, p. 17, Mr. Wilson says: 
" Quackery is not confined to drugs. The ignorant are often 
imposed upon by what designing knaves call * charms \ and when 
the former fail, recourse is had to the latter." Patients to this 
day travel miles to visit an ignorant and rude practitioner 
who has acquired repute in much the same way as a wise 
body of old was supposed to posses special mystic powers. 
See Lee-penny, Irish Stone, Kin-cough. 

•• Aw've just been ower wi* something warm, 
To try and ease the weary cough 
Which baffles byeth the drugs and charm." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1824, pt. i., v. 96. 

CHASER, a male sheep imperfectly developed in one of its 
testicles. 
J 



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146 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS* 

CHAT, refreshments, somethiDg to eat. — Hodgson MS. See 
Chack. 

CHATS, keys of trees, as ash chats, sycamore chats, &c. {Ra/s 
Gloss,, 1691.) •* Spray wood, small twigs." (Brockett, 3rd ed.) 
Chats in lead-mining, small pieces of stone with lead ore 
adhering to them. When the ore has a portion of the matrix 
attached to it, it is of less specific gravity than the solid ore, 
and in process of dressing it comes to the surface, and the 
material so appearing is called chats. It is raked off and 
dressed in a finer and closer set mill, called a chat mill, and 
the product is known as *< seconds" or chat ore. 

CHATTER, to tear, to make ragged, to bruise.— Halliweirs Diet. 
Chattercdy bruised. See Scathered. 

CHAVYL, a cleaver, as a butcher's cleaver. — Hodgson MS. 

CHAWDY, the stomach of a pig, which is cleaned, boiled and 
eaten as tripe. 

CHAWLIN, eating with a mumbling sound. 

CHEAT, a linen breast piece without a shirt to it — a " dickey." 

CHEATRY, deceit, fraud. 

CHECKERS, the game of draughts. Checker board, a draught 
board. 

CHECK-VIEWER, one who checks the working of coal on 
behalf of the owner of the royalty. 

CHECK-WEIGHMAN, the representative of the men, who 
checks the weight of coals at the surface, on behalf of the 
workmen at a colliery. 

CHEEK, the side of a place. ** The door cheek:' The rock on 
each side of a lode of lead is called the cheek of the vein. 

•• To show them we deal wi' Newcassel. 
Twee blackeys sal mense the door cheek.** 

W. Midford, Pitman's Courtship, 1818. 

CHEEP, to make a noise like a young bird ; to speak weakly 
or quietly. •* He wis hitten bad eneuf, yit he nivver cheeped:* 

CHEEPER, a young bird, an unfledged thing. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I47 

CHEEPY, the titlark. 

CHEER, a common salutation is ** Watch hear I " or " What cheer ?' 
"Cheare, or cheere, look ; air of countenance." — Nare's Gloss. 

CHEERER, a glass of toddy. Cheerer-glaLSS^ a large toddy 
tumbler. ** Buttered cheerer^* a little butter added to spirit 
and warm water. 

CHEESE. To place the cheese bottom uppermost was formerly 
considered as a token of great disrespect to the person so 
treated. 

** The folk of Chatton say the cheese of Chatton is better 
than the cheese of Chillingham ; but the cheese of Chatton's 
nee mair like the cheese of Chillingham than chalk's like 
cheese." Another reading of their Border shibboleth begins 
"There's as good cheese in Chillingham as ever Chafts 
chewed." Denham quotes the above and says the " gird " in 
it is at the local pronunciation at those places, sh being 
sounded for ch. This peculiarity is also located at Chirnside. 
See Murray, Dialect of S, Counties of Scotland^ 1^73* P* 85. 

" To set the cheese on the table upside down is still considered as a 
want of respect for the person before whom it is placed ; and to set down 
a loaf bottom uppermost, after cutting a slice of bread, is supposed to be 
as unlucky an omen as to spill the salt.'* — S. Oliver, Rambles in 
Noftkumberland, 1835, p. 134. 

CHEESE-AN'-BREED, the budding leaves of the hawthorn, 
which are picked and eaten by children. 

CHEESE-AND-BREED-BELL. On Christmas Eve, at 
Hexham, the Priory bell was rung at seven o'clock p.m., and 
this was called the cheese-and-bread-belL 

CHEESES, seed of common mallow, Malva sylvestris. 

••The sitting down when school was o'er 
Upon the threshold of the door, 
Picking from mallows, sport to please. 
The crumpled seed we called a cheese."* 

Clare. 

CHEG, CHEGGLE, to gnaw or champ a resisting substance. — 
Brockett, 

CHEMMERLY, CHAMBERLYE, urine bottled till it ferments, 
and then used for cleansing clothes. 



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148 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CHEP, a familiar name for a man. " Wor cheps " means our 
associates. ** Them cheps is nee use," said in pointing to some 
feckless fellows. 

" Me nyem is Billy Oliver, i' Ben well toon aw dwell, 
An aw's a clever ch$p, aw*s shure, tho* aw de say'd mesel*, 
Sic an a clever ckep am aw," &c., &c. 

*' Billy 0Uver*5 RamhU:* 

Allan's Collection, p. 79. 

" The maister was a cannie chep. 
They ca'd him Jacky Carter." 

R. Gilchrist. Voyage to Lnnnin, 1824. 

CHEPSTER, the starling.— J5y(?^fc^^/. 

CHESFIT, a cheese vat ; the vessel in which the curd is placed 
to be pressed into cheese. 

CHESS, to chase. In a colliery " after the winding engine has 
been standing for some time, the cages are run up and down 
the shaft to see that all is right before men are allowed to get 
into the cage." This is to chase or chess the ropes. — GreenwelL 

CHESSELL, or CHESSWELL, a cheese press.— Brockeit, 
3rd ed. See Chesfit. 

CHESTED, coffined. " He will have to be chested to-night." 

CHESTER, a Roman camp. This is always pronounced 
Chester, never caster or cesier, in Northumberlana. As may be 
expected, in the land of the Roman Wall, it is of frequent 
occurrence, and about twenty- six place-names may be counted 
in Northumberland which end in Chester, or are combined with 
it. In Northern England we find Tadcaster, Doncaster, 
Lancaster. In the Midlands and South- West it is a soft c, 
as Leicester, Worcester, Gloucester. Elsewhere the c has 
become ch, and we find Winchester, Chichester, Chester- 
field — the ch being sounded as in Manchester and in our 
Northumberland chesters. "The Romans held Britain for 
nearly four hundred years. They left behind them only six 
words — Casira, a camp; Strata, a paved road; Colonia, a 
settlement ; Fossa, a trench ; Partus, a harbour ; and Vallum^ 
a rampart. The treatment of the Latin word Castra in this 
island has been both singular and significant ; and it has 
always taken the colouring of the locality into whose soil it 
struck root. It is worthy of notice that there are in Scotland 
no words ending in caster. Though the Romans had camps 
in Scotland, they do not seem to have been so important as 
to become the centres of towns." (Prof. Meiklejohn, English 
Language, 1886, p. 210.) " When we find ourselves in a land, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 149 

no longer of casters, but of clusters, we begin to ask whether 
some of these settlements were not Jutish or Saxon, rather 
than Anglian." (Freeman, English Towns and Districts, p. 327.) 
" The Clusters [of Bermcia] as opposed to the casters ol Deira, 
are, if not distinctively Saxon, at least English, as opposed 
to Danish." {The same, p. 448.) The chief names in the 
limit of Northumberland folk-speech are Chester-le-Street, 
Lanchester, Ebchester, Colchester, Binchester, Halton 
Chesters, Walwick Chesters, Great Chesters, Chesterholm, 
Rudchester, Chesterhope, Rochester, &c. In Cumberland 
the Roman stations are called ** castles," as Bewcastle, 
Papcastle, &c., and the sites "castle steads." Whitley Castle 
is a station in Northumberland, but lying close upon the 
confines of Cumberland. 

CHEVIOT HILLS. According to Johnston {Place-names of 
Scotland, p. 62) Cheviot, Welsh cefn, a ridge or back. Compare 
Chevy Chase and Chevington, Northumberland, -^t is a difficult 
ending to explain. In c. 1250, Montes chieuiti ; a, 1300, Mons 
chiuioth. Probably Gaelic c(h)iabach, 'bushy,* from ciabh, hair, 
which would yield both '* Chevy'* and ''Cheviot,'^ — Page 255. 
These hills give their name to the short- wooUed sheep known 
as Cheviots and to the cloth made from their wool. 

CHEWN, a dish-clout. 

CHIBE, a kind of onion. — HalliweWs Diet, See Chives. 

CHIEL, a friend, one very intimate. "He's a queer chieV is 
applied to a familiar as a pet description of a quaint or queer 
character. 

" Sae wiv some varry canny chiels. 
All on the hop an* murry, 
Aw thowt aw d myek a voy'ge to Shiels, 
Iv Jemmy Joneson's Whurry/' 

T. Thompson, Jemmy Joneson's Whurry. 

CHIEVE, to achieve, to succeed in, or accomplish any business. 

CHILDER, children. 

CHILDERMASS-DAY, Innocents* T>d^y.— Ray's Gloss. 

CHILL, a cold. " He's getten a chill." 

CHIMINS, the seeds or inner husks of oats, soaked two or 
three days in cold water to become a jelly, and then boiled in 
water or milk, in which state they are by many considered 
very good. They are used in Cumberland and Northumber- 
land, but most and best made in Scotland. — Hodgson MS. 
See SowANs. 



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150 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CHIMLEY, CHUMLA, chimney. C hi f nicy -crucky the pot-hook 
hung in the chimney. Chmley-nenkf the chimney corner. 
Ckimley-piece, the mantel-shelf. General. 
" Losh's big chimley at Walker." 

** Changes on the Tyne.** 

Bards of the Tyne, p. 215. 

CHINE, a chain. [S.] In farm work, " lang chines*' are plough 
chains ; *• short chines " are trace chains ; " shoother chines " 
are the chains for yoking to the cart shafts. The small 
bubbles rising from an otter as he dives across the bottom of 
the water are called his chine. 

••The chep wi' the chine:* 

James Horsley, A Ride on the Swing Bridge. 

CHINK, money. 

•* Noo -when aw cum ti think, aw'd better spend maw chink:* 

Ed. Corvan. The Comet, 1858. — Allan's Collection, p. 73. 

CHINNEL, CHANNEL, gravel. 

CHINNEL, to separate the dust or smallest coals from larger 
ones. 

CHINNELY, small, as gravel or coal separated from the dust, 
or dead small. ^^Chinley coals are neither round (large) nor 
small, but such as will pass over the skreen and among the 
best coals." — Greenwell. Chinnely clay is clay with admixture 
of gravel. Chinnely sand is sand with gravel. The stream 
near Bardon Mill is called **ChineUy burn." Compare 
Trindle, Trinilies. 

CHIP, to break or crack ; said of an egg when the young bird 
breaks the shell. — Brockett. 

CHIP, a term used by salmon fishers, who say that a fish 
" chipSy'' when it cuts the surface of the water without leaping. 

CHIRM, to chirp; applied especially to the melancholy under- 
tone of a bird previous to a storm. — Brockett, " A chartn of 
birds." See Chorm. 

•• I cherme as byrdes do whan they make a noyse a great nomber 
togyther." — Palsgrave, Hallitvell's Diet. 

" What variety of character, as well as variety of emotion, may be 
distinguished by the practised ear in a * charm of birds.**' — C. Kingsley, 
Prose Idylls, ''A Charm 0/ Birds:' 2nd ed., 1874, p. 13. 

CHISEL, CHIZZEL, a common quality of meal from oats. 
** A caad chisel crowdy." The coarse offal from flour, known 
as boxings, used for feeding pigs. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 15I 

CHISEL, the cutting face of a drill, or boring rod. 

CHIST, a chest, a variant olkist. 

" Two olde chystes."— Will, in R. Welford's History of Newcastle in the 
XVL Century, p. 320. 

CHITTER, to chatter. •* Me teeth wis chitterin wi* the caad." 

CHITTER-CHATTER, chat, prattle; also the action of the 
teeth when chattering with cold. 

CHITTERS, part of the intestines of a goose, used in making 
a giblet pie. 

CHIVES, the small onions. Allium schoenoprasum^ found on the 
Roman Wall in Northumberland. The chives at Walltown, 
&c., are described as "Native, Local type.** — Baker, Flora 
of Northuinberland and Durham, 

*• In the crevices of the whin rock chives grow abundantly. The 
general opinion is that we are indebted for those plants to the Romans, 
who were much addicted to the use of these and kindred savoury 
vegetables."— Dr. Bruce, Handbook to Roman Wall, 1884, p. 171. 

CHOCK, packed, crammed, blocked. *^Cftock up again*d.'* 
•*CA(wrMull." 

CHOCK, to block ; to choke, as in the phrase, " The spoot wis 
chocked up wi' clarts.** 

CHOCK, a piece of wood for stopping waggons at the top of a 
bank. {Mining Glossary, Newcastle Tertns, 1852.) Also a 
square pillar for supporting the roof of a pit, built up of short 
lengths of wood. 

CHOCK-AND-BLOCK, tightly filled up. 

CHOKE-DAMP, called also after-damp and surfeit, the result 
of explosion of fire-damp in a mine ; the deadly carbonic acid 
gas. German dampf, **any thick smoke, mist, or vapour, 
especially when it is of sulphureous nature." — Adelung, 
quoted by Wedgwood, Diet, of Eng. Etymology • 

CHOKE-DEALS (for chock-deals), deals fitted closely together 
so as to be caulked, if necessary, in sinking. 

*' We lay ckoah-dedU (as we call them), which is deals put in as fast, 
or all along, as we dig the sand or earth." — ^J. C, Compleat Collier, 1708, 
p. 21. 

CHOLLER, a double chin ; also the loose flesh under a turkey- 
cock*s neck — a cock's wattles. — Brockctt, 



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152 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CHOP, to make a sudden retrograde movement. " The wind 
chopped round to the nor'rard." "The fox chops back and 
doubles like a hare." (James Armstrong, Wanny Blossoms^ 
p. 85.) ** We have two Labourers at a time at the handle 
of the bore Rod, and they chop, 6x pounce." {]- C, Compkat 
CcUier, 1708, p. 11.) ** Have good strong wooden Plugs 
ready made, whilst boreing, to chop into the Bore-hole 
immediately." (The same, p. 14.) It also means to put out, 
to confuse. '* Now, this has chopH me by my text." {yoco- 
Serious Discourse, Newcastle, 1686,. p. 38.) Hence a chop is a 
mischance. " Sir, after this there did befaw Another chop^ 
was warst of aw ! " {J he satiu, p. 28.) 

CHOP-BACK, in mining, an excavation driven the reverse 
way. 

CHOPS, the chaps or mouth. 

"For hay but seldom blest their chops'' (the donkey's fare being 
generally thistles)."— T. Wilson, The Oilin' 0' DUky*s Wig, 1826. 

"To find out the nyem, now each worried his chops'" — bit his lips. — 
R. Gilchrist, The Skipper's Erudition, 1824. 

CHORCH, church. The more frequent form on Tyneside, 
where kirk is now seldom heard. The hard k for ch is heard 
in kist, a chest ; kairn (kirn), a churn ; and in the final sound 
of such words as thak, thatch ; scrat or scart, scratch ; muckU, 
much ; snak, snatch ; stick, stitch ; hirk, birch, &c. Compare 
Kirk and following words. 

" Now we've a chorch te mend the bad, 
And help them up to Heeven." 

T. Wilson, The Oilin' 0' Dicky's Wig, 1826. 

CHORK, saturated or soaked with water — Northumberland, — 
HalliweWs Diet, 

CHORM, to croon, to warble. 

" Chorming some bee-a-baa-sang." 

J. P. Robson, Lament, 1870. 

CHORM, a chirp, chatter, as of birds. See Chirm, Churm. 

" Sweet is the breath of morn, her rising sweet, 
With charm of earliest birds." 

Paradise Lost, iv., 641. 

CHORNELS, small hard swellings in the glands of the neck in 
young persons, called ** waxing chirnels,*' — Brockett — ChirnelL 

CHORT, to squirt with the teeth. Brockett gives chirt. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 1 53 

CHOUKS, the glands of the throat, immediately under the 
jaw bones. — Brockett, 3rd ed. 

CHOUP, CAT-CHOUP, a hip ; the fruit of the hedge briar, or 
wild rose — Rubus major. 

CHOUS, an old term for small coal. — Chas. Beaumont, Treatise 
on Coal Mining, quoted in Impartial History of Newcastle, 1801, 
p. 478. 

CHOW, to chew. ** Chow, cJiow, the baccy chow " is the chorus 
sung in a children's game at merry-go-round. 

CHOW, a chew of tobacco, a quid. 

CHOWK, to choke. " The stoor meast chowk'd us.'* In a 
dog fight, ** Chowk that dog off." Also used to express thirst. 
*• Bring me a drink — aa*s fit te chowk,'' " Chowked wi' his aan 
fat *' — checkmated ; hoist with his own petard. 

CHOWLS, or JOWLS, the ']2Ly^s,—Brockett, 3rd ed. 

CHRIS-CROSS, bad tempered, cross ; a fit of temper. 

" 1772, January 13. The said W™ Smith in his cairs crosses abused 
the Beadle and endeavoured to sow discord and division among the 
members.** — Keelman's Books. 

CHRIS-CROSS, a cross. In a child's game a distinction is 
carefully observed between a chris and a cross, the former 
being made thus x and the latter thus +• 

CHRISENMAS, CHRISAMAS, Christmas. 

*' Honest Blind Willy shall string this iv rhymes, and awll sing'd for a 
Chrissenmas carol." — T. Thompson, d. 18 16, Canny Newcastle. 

** Item, paid for seven yardes of yalowe carsaye, and seven yardes of 
blue carsaye, at 2s. 8d. the yarde, for the fulles" (fool's) "cottes and 
cappes agaynste Christynmas, 37s. ^d.''— Newcastle Municipal Accounts, 
December, 1561. 

CHRISTEN, a human being. **As wise as a Christen," said 
of a dog, meaning as wise as a human being. Mr. Halliwell 
notes that in Newcastle the sedan chairmen were called 
•* Christian horses.** 

CHRISTENING (pron. chrisnin.). This is generally carried 
out with attendant pomp and circumstance ; but before the 
procession starts for the church the nurse makes up a neat 
parcel in which spice cake, or loaf, with cheese and a packet 



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154 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

of salt are enclosed. This is handed to the iirst person met 
with on leaving the house. If the infant be a girl it is lucky 
to give it to a man ; if a boy, to give it to a woman, but it 
must be given to the first person met with. 

" She deck'd us for church on the Christning day. 
Cut the bread-and-cheese meant to be stow'd 
In the first lucky pocket she met on her way 
To the church from their humble abode." 

T. Wilson. The VUlagt Howdy . 

Brockett says — under " Child*s-first-visit ** — ** The first time 
an infant visits a neighbour or relation, it is presented with 
three things — a small quantity of salt, bread, and an egg." 

CHUCK, bread. A slang or colloquial word. 

CHUCK, a jolly fellow. 

" We found mony a hearty chuck." 

T. Wilson. The Oilin' o' DUky's Wig, 1826. 

CHUCK, to throw away. 

*• Aw's grieved at heart, push round the can, 
Then empty fra wor hands we'll chuck it." 

R. Gilchrist, 1844. Bold Archie and Blind Willie's Lament. 

CHUCK, the shell of the land and of the sea snail. The game 
of ** chucks an marvels " is played with five of these shells 
and a marble ; sometimes with five small mutton bones, or 
with five small stones. The marble is thrown up and allowed 
to "stot" (rebound) and is caught in its second fall; between 
each "stot " the player picks up one of the chucks at a time till 
the five are in hand ; then two and one, then three and one, 
and so on, till at the last throw the whole five are adroitly 
caught at a sweep. The game is called " chucks and bandies" 
in South Shields. Compare Cocks and Hens. 

CHUCKERS, DOUBLE CHUCKERS, potions of ardent 
spirits. Terms well known [in Brockett*s time] among 
Northern topers. Double- chuckers^ a bumper which requires 
two chucks, or gulps. — Brockett , 3rd ed. 

CHUCKLE-HEED, a stupid person. "What are ye deein, 
ye greet chuckle-heed" said to a clumsy workman by his 
master. See Cuckle-heed. 

"The lubbart wi* the chuckle-heed:' 

R. Emery, d. 1871, The Owl, 

CHUCKY-OOT, look out. 

** Clawdy, tee, might chucky-oot, 
He's jaws he'd surely plaister." 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Hamlick, Prince of Denton, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 155 

CHURM, to express pleasure or satisfaction by a humming 
sound peculiar to quadrupeds and birds. A chirp or bird 
note, the coo of the dove. See Chorm and Chirm. 

" The churm o* the turtledove is hurd i* wor country-side." — ^J. P. 
RobsoD, d. 1870, Sang 0' Solomon, Northumberland version, chap, ii., 
V. 12. 

CHURN-SUPPER, harvest supper. See Kern-supper. 

CINDER BASIN. When a woman has lost her reckoning 
it is still not uncommon to hear that ** she has lost a cinder." 
This phrase refers to a cinder put into a basin at stated times 
to mark a date. The counting of the cinders should agree 
with the reckoning. 

'* I remember a hind s wife (I am speaking of sixty years ago), who 
was bom and bred in Rothbury Forest, where old superstitions and 
customs lingered long, and who, in the interval between her confinement 
and being "churched," would not go out of her house without first 
putting a cinder on the lintel of the door frame." — Letter, Middleton H. 
Dand to writer, April 27th, 1889. 

CINDER COAL, coal deprived of its bitumen by the action of 
a whin dyke or slip. — GremwelL 

CIRSE, or SES, a circular sieve for straining buttermilk. 
Searce, to sift. 

CLAA, a claw. Claa, claat, to claw, to scratch. " Claa me, claa 
thee " — ^you scratch my back and Fll scratch yours ; or you do 
a good turn for me and I will return the compliment. 

CLACK, the low valve of a pump. Its use is to support the 
column of water when the bucket is descending. — Glossary 
of Coal Trade Terms, 1849. In the column of pipes in a pit, 
through which water is pumped, that section containing the 
valve is called the clack-piece. The face on which the valve 
closes is the clack-seAt, The clack-door is the plate bolted over 
the aperture which gives access to the clack. 

CLAES, clothes. 

*• Nyen can say we are i' debt, 
Or want for owther claes or scran." 

T. Wilson, Pitman* s Pay, pt. i., v. 80. 

CLAG, to Stick, to make to adhere. 

" Aa gets them aa clagged togither agyen wi' cobbler's waax." — His 
Other Eye, i88o, p. 7. 

" The f^xxiicc claggedYiis lowe on behind (the tram) and proceeded.'* — Mr. 
John Ro well, article '*Soam,'* Newcastle Weekly Chronicle, April 14th, i888. 



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I 



156 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CLAG-CANDY, candy, so called on account of its sticky, or 
claggy nature. Used to describe something sweet, as : — 

'* Thou's a' clagcandid, ma bonny hinny, 
Thou's double japanded, ma canny bairn.*' 
Song, •♦ Up the Raw.'* 

BelVs Rhymis, 181 2, p. 298 ! 

CLAGGER, a palpable hit, as with a soft missile that strikes 
and sticks (dags) ; a repartee that effectually shuts up an 
opponent. ** That's a dagger, noo ! " Also a cleaver, made of 
a circular piece of leather, with a thong through the centre, 
a boy's toy ; softened in water, and pressed by the foot on a 
stone, it will adhere to and lift the stone by the atmospheric 
pressure. 

CLAGGUM, toffy made with treacle and a little kneading. 
From its sticky consistency, it dags. 
" If money's short, 111 take 
Rabbit skins for claggum.** 

W. Stephenson, d. 1836, The I Utter ant Confectioner. 

CLAGGY, of an adherent, viscid nature. Tar or treacle are 
thus called doggy substances. 

CLAGGY-TOP, coal adhering to the roof of a pit. 

" A seam of coal is said to have a claggv-top when it adheres to the 
roof, and is with difficulty separated." — Greenwell. 

CLAIPIN, noisy, tale-telling. 

GLAIRED, dirty, covered with mud. See Glare. 

CLAIRTS, or CLARTS, wool upon which sheep's droppings 
have gathered and hardened, which is saved and sold by 
shepherds to be cleaned and rendered fit for manufacture. 
The word is quite common among the Cheviot shepherds, 
and at Yetholm the cleaning of this wool is a regular trade. 

CLAITH, cloth. 

CLAM [N.] , damp and clammy, viscous. " Ye mun air the 
shaal ; it*s quite danif'' said of'^a shawl that has got wet. 

CLAM, a moveable collaring for a pump, consisting of two 
pieces of wood indented to receive the pump, and screw- 
bolted together. — Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, 1849. 

CLAM, an and-iron. See Clamps. 

•• i. iron chimney with tongs, rakes, and clams,*' — R. Welford, Hiitory 0/ 
Newcastle, XVI. Century, p. 239. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 1 57 

CLAM. 1. To press, to hold an article tightly. 2. To castrate, 
when the operation rs performed, not by incision, but by 
compression. — Brockett. 

CLAM, CLOM, or CLUM, praeterite of the verb to climb. 

CLAMJAMFREY [N.] , a rabble crowd. 

CLAMMER, to clamber or climb. *• Aa*ve clammered up them 
stairs to the Garth, an' aa's fair dyun." In Nan's Gloss, the 
word is given as ** a colloquial pronunciation." It is in 
constant use. 

CLAMMERSOME, clamorous. 

CLAMP, a large fire made of underwood. — Brockett. 

CLAMP, to walk with a clanking or noisy tread ; to bind or 
hoop with iron. 

CLAMPER, a heavy blow. See Clanker. 

CLAMPS, irons at the end of fires, to keep up the fewel. — 
Ra/s Gloss, 

CLAMS, instruments used in gelding lambs and foals. — 
Hodgson MS. A small vice or press. — Brockett, 3rd ed. 
The shoemaker's clams consist of two pieces of wood of a bent 
shape opening at the top, where leather is held to be sewn. 
Cramps used in masonry. Weeding tongs, with long wooden 
handles. 

CLANKER, a heavy, clanging blow, a hit that settles an 
argument, an effective rejoinder. 

" That day a* Hawks's blacks may rue, 
They gat monny a verra sair clanker, O." 

J. Selkirk, d. 1843. Swalmll Hopping. 

CLAN KIN, as " a clankin lass," a stout, active girl. Probably 
referring to the clank made by the clogs of an active maiden. 

CLANNOMS, streaks of colour in stone. 

CLAP, to pat tenderly. "Give him a clap on the back," is 
equivalent to " encourage him by your approval." 

*' She curl'd ma hair, or ty'd ma tail, 
And clapt and strokt ma little Cappy." 

T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i.. v. 43. 



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158 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CLAP, to put quickly ; to seat oneself hurriedly. 
•• Clapt little Neddy on his knee." 

T. Wilson, The Pitman*s Pay, 1826, pt. !., v. 86. 
'*Clap on the kettle, hinny." 
** He clap*d on the jarvies iv a minute." 
•• If a shoe's wanted ye hardly need stop — 
Iv a jiify they clap on a new "un." 

T. Wilson, Stanzas on an Intended Road, 1825. 
*' Clap yor lug tiv a stob." 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Wonderful Tallygrip. 
" Aa clapt mesel doon." 

R. Emery, d. 187 1, Baggy Nanny. 

CLAP, to crouch down as a partridge does. " The covey's 
clapped, ye canna see them." 

** If any person come near the calves, they clap their heads close to the 
ground."— James Hall, Guide to Glendale, 1887, p. 25. 

CLAP-BENNY, a request made to infants in the nurse's arms 
to clap their hands, as the only means they have of expressing 
their prayers, or of signifying their desire of a blessing. — 
Brochett. 

CLAP-BOARD, a smaller size of split oak, imported from 
north Germany, and used by coopers for making barrel 
staves; in later times also for wainscotting. — Dr. Murray, 
New, Eng. Diet. (Obs.) 

" Item pd for clapbords, 2s. 8d." — Gateshead Church Books^ 1649. 

CLAPPERCLAW, to beat, to abuse. 

•' He clapper-claw' d their jerkins soundly." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, i686, p. 71. 

CLAPPERS, the kind of rattle made of three pieces of flat 
wood, usually fastened together by a thong. The middle 
piece is about twice as long as the other two and is reduced 
at one end to form a handle. It is used about a farm to 
frighten crows from the corn and potatoes. ** Callant ! " gan 
away to the craas, and take yor clappers wa yea." The word 
is also used as a simile for the tongue, as " Had yor clapper 
tongue." 

CLART, CLAIRT, to besmear with mud ; to do anything in a 
sloppy, slatternly way. " What are ye clartin on wi' there ? " 

CLARTS, mud, dirt ; also applied to dirty wool. See Clairts. 
" That hallion McAdam the pavement up-tore, 
And left in its stead darts and dust in galore.'* 

\ R. Gilchrist, 1835, Song of Improvements, 
" Wi* darts they sliould be plaister'd weel 
That jeerM Blin,d Willie's singin'." 

I^. Gilchrist, d. 1844, Blind Willie's Singin*. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I59 

CLARTY, to dirty. " Ye'll clarty the door step wi* yor feet." 

CLARTY, muddy, bemudded, low, mean, as ** He's a clariy 
body." 

" Other clarty tricks he play'd." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourses, 1868, p. 47. 

It also means foul when applied to the weather. " A clarty 
day." At Morpeth, a few years ago, on a very wet day, the 
old bellman made his announcement as follows : " Oh, yes ! 
the sale that was to take place at one o'clock by Mr. Storey 
is postponed on account of the clartimss of the weather.** 

*• If it be clarty t you're sure for to get 
Weel plaister'd byeth *hint aud afore, man." 

T. Charlton, '* Newcastle Improvements.** 

Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 239. 

*^ Clarty fine" means shabby genteel, and ** clarty finery," 
tawdry finery. 

CLASH, the sound made by a heavy clanking or crashing blow, 
as in the violent shutting of a door or the letting fall of tin- 
ware, &c. ** She set the tea tray doon wiv a clash" «• He 
banged the door tee wi* sic a clash," 

CLASH, to strike, to slam, to throw down violently or with 
clatter. ** Hoo wis aa to pull up, wiv a train like that ahint 
us, when he just clashed the distance signal i* me feyce as aa 
wis passin't." (An Engine Driver expostulating.) At an 
assize trial in Newcastle a witness deposed, ** He clashed his 
jaa ; an then clagged up his eye wi* clarts.** 

"Oh, lass, dinnet clash the door."— Joe Wilson, d. 1875. 

CLASH, to gossip idly; light or idle talk. "Aa canna be 
fash't wi' that man's clashJ* 

" I came to have a little clash.'' 

Ed. Chicken, The Collier's Wedding, 1735. 

CLATCH, a mess, slops. 

CLATT, to pull the loose wool from about the udders of ewes 
as a precaution from being swallowed by lambs when sucking. 

CLATTER, a rattling noise ; loud, tattling talk. " The window 
shutter cam doon wiv a clatter" 

" We need not wonder at the clatter ^ when every tongue wags." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i., v. 12. 
*' Aw've knawn him sit my est roun' the clock, 
Swattling an clattering on wi' Charley." 

The same, pt. i., v. 90. 



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l6o NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CLAUGHT, snatched dii— Northumberland.— HaHiwelVs Did. 
See Claa. 

CLAVER, to climb up. The Rev. John Hodgson suggests 
that the word combines the idea of " cleavering or adhering, 
mixed with the idea of climbing." In this sense it is very 
suggestive of the act of "speelin'" a tree, or otherwise at 
once clinging and climbing. 

" Hill upon hill rises ever se high, 

Up whilk the poor animals now drag their load. 
For a' the warld like claverin up the slcy." 

T. Wilson, Stanzas on Intended Road, 1824. 

" Then into the coach Geordy clavered wi* speed.'* 

R. Emery, d. 187 1, Newcastle Wonders. 

CLAVER, to gossip in a loud tone. 
CLAVER, dower.— Brockett. 

CLAVERS, loud idle talk. 

" Be dumb, ye leeing, yammerin* hoonds ! 
Nor wi yor clavers fash us." 

W. Oliver, d. 1848, The Bonassus. 

CLAVERS, goosegrass, Galium aparine, — Brockett^ 3rd ed. 

CLAY, a pitman's candlestick, made of a piece of clay. 

CLAYDOLLY, the woman worker in a brickfield, who carries 
the brick from the moulder's table to the open field where it 
is to be dried. 

CLEAD, to cover, to clothe. See Cleed. 

CLEAK [N.] , to snatch. See Click. 

CLEAN, entirely. "Aa wis clean done." "He wis clean gyen 
iv a minit." Clean gyen is also used as a matter of comparison. 
'* It is clean gyen wi'd" — that is, superior to some competing 
article. 

CLEAN, a pit is clean when free from gas. A coal seam is ckan 
when it is free from dirt partings. 

CLEANIN, the after-birth of an animal. 

CLEAP, to name or call. — Brochett, 3rd ed. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. l6l 

CLEAT, the vertical joints or facings in coal or stone. There 
are frequently two cleats in coal, at which, when distinct, the 
coal may be broken into rhomboidal fragments. These cUats 
do not always intersect each other at the same angle. — Gloss, 
of Coal Trade Terms, 1849. "She cleats bonny,*' said of coal 
when this characteristic is marked. 

CLEAVER, a disc of leather perforated in the centre for a 
string. The knot in the string closes this centre hole, and on 
the leather being wet and applied to a smooth surface the 
disc dags, or adheres to it. Thus stones, &c., are lifted and 
carried by boys in play. The toy is also called a dagger [N.] . 
See Clagger. 

CLEAVIN, the fork of the human body. 

" What a poor forked creature man is ! " — King Lear. 
"A forked radish with a head fantastically carved."— T. Carlyle, 
Sartor Resartus. 

CLECK, a hook. " Hing yor coat on thsit deck,** SccCleek, 2. 

CLECK, to breed, to hatch. 

" Will potato seed deck the first year ? " Will it produce tubers the 
year in which it is sown ? — Hodgson MS. 

CLECK, CLETCH, CLECKIN, CLOCKIN, a brood of 
young birds. Cleckin or clockin is the chuckle, or cluck-cluck 
of satisfaction or alarm made by the hen mother over her 
brood. 

" Wad ye believM, in less than a fortnith a beautiful clockin o' chickens 
' was hatched."— Geddes, Ikeyoo. — Bards of the Tyne, 1849. 

CLED (J>.t.), clothed. See Cleed. 

" Aw cled into her mourning weed." 

Bernard Rumney, an excellent ballad of 
The Sickness of Eckfs Mare. 

CLED-SCOOR, a cled score, equal to twenty-one in countmg 
sheep. In the transference of hill stock the numbers are 
frequently calculated by the cled-scoor, 

CLEED, to clothe. 

" Feed us and cleed us weel, she may." 

T. Wilson, The Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. iii., v. 52. 
•* When I cam to your bridal bed 
I'd fouth o*claes to deed me back, 
But now IVe scarce a single plack.*' 

Description ofSandgate. 
•• The n^ek'd to deed, the hungry to feed, 
And gie the houseless shelter." 

T. Wilson, Oilin* 0' Dicky's Wig, 1826, v. 34. 
K 



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l62 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CLEEDIN, clothing, covering. 

CLEEK, CLICK, to snatch. See Click. 

" I cheked yen of them by the arm." 

JocO'Strious Discoursi, Newcastle, z686. 

CLEEK, a crook to catch at anything. A barbed hook used to 
land salmon. (A **gafF" is a salmon hook without a barb.) 
A snatch hook. 

*' He's made a clak but and a creel — 
A creel bat and a pin ; 
And he*s away to the chimley top, 
And he's letten the bonny clerk in." 

Old song. The Keach »' tk$ Creel. 

CLEEK, to breed or hatch. See Cleck. 

CLEET, the hoof of an ox or a sheep. See Clute, Clooty. 

CLEG, a gadfly ; hence applied to a tedious, tiresome child. 

CLEG, a clever person, an adept. — Brockett, ? Gleg, 

CLEUGH, a dell, or cleft through which water runs. 

" A gray stone in a clowghe syd under a plac called the Crowkhyl.** — 
Award dated 1554. — ^f- Charlton, North Tynedale, p. 66. 
" The one of them bight Adam Bel. 
The other Clym o' the Cleugk, 
The thyrd was William of Cloudeslee, 
An archer good ynough." 

Old ballad, printed 1550. 
"A hope is the head of a vale, a cleugh is a sort of diminutive hope, 
where the vale is narrowed by opposite craigs." — S. Oliver, Rambles in 
Northumberland, 1835, p. 87, note. 

CLEW, a ball of worsted ; hence, probably, a globular swelling 
like a boil. When a person is restless and uneasy it is 
common to say, " He*s getten a clew,'* 

CLEW, CLEWS, or CLOOSE, the floodgate of a mill dam.— 
Brockett^ 3rd ed. See Cloor. 

CLEYT, CLITE, to wear unevenly, to make one-sided. 
" Your shoe's cUyted.*' See Aclite. 

CLIAR, CLIRE, a hard substance formed generally on the 
liver or lungs of animals. Clired^ having a dire, a dangerous 
obstruction in an animal's throat. See Clyre. 

CLICK, a rent, a tear. '< Leuk what a greet click thor's iv her 
frock." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 163 

CLICK, to snatch, to catch up, to clutch. " He clicked it oot 
o* me hand." 

" They lower 'd the sail, but it aa waddent dee, 
So he clicked up a coal, an' maist felled the Pee-dee." 

W. Armitrong, Jenny Hoolet, 1833. 

'* Aa've seen him, in this muddled mess, 
ClUk up his chalk and wooden buik.'* 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay» 1827, pt. ii., v. 45. 

CLIFTY, smart, busy, industriously active. It is now oftener 
applied to a horse, and more particularly to a mare. '* She's 
a clifty ganner.** 

" Clam up the shrouds, and wrought han-spun, 
And preuv'd themsels twa clifty men." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 70. 

*' There's very few can foot so nice 
As clifty Will Carstairs." 

Genuine Tom Whittell, 1815. 

CLIM, to climb. Past^ clam; p. part. , clominen or clom, Drayton 
uses this form in his Battaile of Agincourt, p. 30. dimmer is to 
clamber. 

" The waves to elimme" ib. p. s,—Halliwell's Diet, 

CLIM, the name Clement. 

CLING, to dry up, to wither, to shrivel. In The Prich of 
Conscience one of the symptoms of approaching death is 
stated to be that the patient's **bely clynges."* Edition 
Morris, line 823. 

" Pal and clungen was his chek. 
His skin was klungen to the bane." 

Metrical Homilies, p. 8. 

CLING-CLANG, in confederacy. " Thor aall ding-clangs like 
the tinklers o' Yacomb." — Old saying. 

CLINK, to hammer up so as to tighten anything, to clench. 

CLINK-RING, an iron ring used in building wooden ships. 
A bolt with a head is put through first, then the ring is 
slipped on the inside and clinched. 

CLINKER, a furnace slag, or the fused products of com- 
bustion on a smith's hearth, or in an engine furnace. 

CLINKER, a clever person, an adept. 

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164 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CLINKER-BUILT, having the edge of each plank or layer 
overlapping, not butting, the next to it. The wooden steam- 
tug boats on the Tyne are clinker-built, each strake overlapping 
the one below it. In Hodgson's Northumberland^ iii., 2, p, 76, 
there is a description of the discovery at the Roman station, 
Whitley Castle, of a large dung-hilL " It abounds with old 
shoes, all made right and left — those of men, clinker-built" 

CLINT, a cliff of rock. In Northumberland, generally applied 
to river cliffs. — Hugh MiWex^ Geology of Otterbum and Eldsdcn. — 
Geological Survey Memoir. 

CLIP, to clamp, to hold fast. To shear sheep. 

CLIPPERS, a spring hook used in sinking, by which the bow 
of the corf is hung on to the rope. 

CLIPPET, a large hook fastened to the end of a stick, and 
used in sea fishing to haul the fish into the boat, or out of the 
vessel's hold when discharging cargo; the fish are hooked 
through the gills when lifted by the clippet. 

CLIPS, weeding tongs; large lifting hooks used in hoisting 
timber, made like a pair of tongs, with hooked ends, which 
** seize '* as the weight of the log bears. 

" The pot-hooks, or bow, by which a pot or pan is suspended over a 
fire." — Brockett, 3rd ed. 

•• Shears, scissors— Northumbtrland.**—HaUiweWs Diet, 

CLIPSE, eclipse. " The meun's i' the clipse^ 

CLISH-CLASH, CLISH-MA-CLAVER, CLICK-CLACK, 
CLITTER-CLATTER, various terms for idle, gossiping 
talk. 

" I clytier, I make a noyse as harnesse or peuter dysshes, or any sucbe 
lyke thynges."— Palsgrave, quoted in HalliwelVs Did. under Clitter-datUr, 

CLIVES, CLIVAS, CLIVUS, a stick cut with a fork or 
hooked branch at one end, like a very long walking stick. 
It is used by woodmen to hook on to a tree so as to direct its 
fall if it should appear to lean aside. " Had on choppin, 
mister, till aa cut a clivus.'' Said by a woodman at Temperley 
Grange, March, 1890. 

CLIVVER, CLIVVOR, clever. Well, in good health. " Hoo 
are ye the day, lad V " Man, aa*s clivver'' 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 165 

CLOCK, CLOCKER, a beetle. Any large beetle is called a 
clock. *'Killin clocks wV clubs*' is an expression applied to a 
person using large means for very small ends, or to one 
whose performances fall short of his promises. ** He's 
elways gan to kill clocks wi' clubs" is the very effective 
description of such a person. The seeding head of a dandelion 
is called a clock by children, who repeat the words, " Bell 
horses, bell horses, what time o' day? One o'clock, two 
o'clock, three and away." The number of puffs, which are 
after this required to dissipate the seeds, indicate the hour. 

CLOCK, to sit an egg ; hence the phrase *'clockin'" — that is, 
sitting for an inordinate time. *' What are ye sittin' clockin 
theor at ?" 

CLOCKER, a sitting hen, or a hen with chickens. ** docker 
an' bords," meaning hen and chicks, is applied to a variety of 
the garden daisy which has the large central head surrounded 
by diminutive flower heads. 

CLOCKER, a maker or cleaner of clocks. ** Wor clock's aa 
wrang, Bella; she wants cleanin." "Ay, Harry, but the 
docker's comin next week to clean hor." 

CLOD-MELL, a wooden mallet for breaking down clods in 
potato fields, &c. 

CLOFFY, bedraggled, feckless, slattern. "A cloffy body" 
describes a woman who is a slut or slattern. 

CLOFT, the cleft or branch of a tree. 

*' The jointure of two branches, or of a branch with the trunk.*'— 
HalliwelVs Diet, 

CLOG, in mining, a sledge loaded with stones and dragged 
round by the gin, to which it acts as a brake. 

CLOG, a log of wood. ** Dry the clog a bit mair afore ye put it 
o' the fire." The yule-log is commonly called " yvHe-clog'' 

CLOG, a shoe with wooden sole. It is usually protected by 
iron plates, called "caakers." 

" A hat that never cost a groat— 
A neckless sark — a clog and shoe." 

T. Wilson, Pitman* s Pay, 1826, pt. i., v. 61. 

CLOG, to patch or repair. 

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l66 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CLOGGER, a clog shoemaker. In Newcastle there was 
formerly, at the Head of the Side, a ^'dogger's Entry." 
This, like the «* Baker's Entry," " Flaxdresser's Yard/' 
*' Butcher Bank," and such other places, probably indicated 
the special trade carried on in the locality. 

CLOINTER, disorder. See Clunter. 

CLOIT, a clown, a stupid fellow. — Brockett, Clot is the more 
common form in Newcastle. *' Get oot, ye greet clot^ ye." 

CLOOD, a cloud. Cloody, cloudy. 

CLOOR, a slmce—NoHhmiherland.—Halliweirs Did. The word 
was used by a witness in an assize trial at Newcastle, July, 
1890. ** He pulled doon the cloor.'' Compare Clew, 2. 

" Cloor, sluice, &c., dial, form of clow.** 

Dr. Murray, New Eng. Diet. 

CLOOT, to clout, to patch with cloth, or to mend anything 
with a patch, as ** Cloot the tin pan." 

'* Ods heft I maw pit claes— dis thou hear ? 
Are warse o* wear ; 
Mind, cloot them weel when aw's away." 

J. Shield, Bob Cranky s Adieu, 

To strike; as ** Aa'll cloot yor jaw." 

" She cloots the bits o* bairns aboot, 
An packs them off ti skuil." 

T. Wilson, The Washing Day, 1843. 

In The Pitman's Pay^ pt. ii., v. 56, the little trapper boy tells 
woefully : — 

" Full mony a curse and clout 
Aw gat for sleepin at the door." 

CLOOT, a cloth, a rag. '* Aa*ll pin a Aish-cloot te yor tail," says 
an irate cook to an intruder into the kitchen. A cheese-cloot 
is the cloth used in cheese making. 

CLOOT-DOLLY, a doll made of cloth. 

CLOOTY-HAT, a bonnet for field work, made of cloth. 

CLOOTY, the devil ; that is, the cloi^en-footed one. See 
Cleet, Clute. 

" They could, aw think, compare't wi* nowse 
But Clootie's gang a' brocken lowse.'* 

T. Wilson, Opening of the Newcastle and 
Carlisle Railway^ 1838. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 167 

CLOSE, a small enclosure, as ** a close of land," '' a calf close.'' 
See Garth. A narrow street closed up for defence, as the 
Close at Newcastle, which was defended by the Close Gate 
and the Castle. 

** Formerly several of the principal Barons of Noithumberland and 
people of Newcastle had houses m it, also the antient Mayors." — 
Hodgson MS. 

CLOSE-BED, a panelled bedstead, or bunk, with sliding 
doors. These close, or "box-beds" were sometimes hidden 
behind what appeared to be the panelled side of a room. No 
better description of their unsanitary condition could be given 
than close-bed. 

CLOSER, a firebrick 9 inches long by 2^ inches square; 
sometimes called a " soap," from its resemblance to a bar of 
soap. 

CLOT, a clod, a sod. " He hit him wiv a clot." A heavy, 
stupid fellow. See Cloit. 

CLOTCH, an ungainly person with awkward gait. 
CLOTCHY, clumsy. " Eh, but yor a clotchy han'." 
CLOT-HEED, a blockhead. 

CLOUD-BERRY, the ground mulberry, Rubus chamantorus, Linn, 
It is also called, noopSj knot-berry, and knout-berry, 

"Abundant on Cheviot, &c. It is said to have been feathered on 
Simonside and the Dead water Fell, at the head of North Tynedale." — 
New Flora of Northumberland and Durham. — Natural History Transactions, 
vol. ii., 1867, p. 158. 

CLOUGHY, a woman dressed in a tawdry manner. — Grose. 

CLOUR, a small lump or swelling, a dimple or indentation 
like the hollow made in a piece of tin by the blow of a 
hammer. In mining, a clour is a '* small depression of roof 
into coal, mostly in a post roof." — GreenwelL See Clyre and 
Cliar. 

CLOUR, to strike so as to dint the head. ** He gat a cloured 
heed " — a broken head. 

CLOUTER, CLOWTER, to work in careless or disorderly 
manner, to perform dirty work. 

CLOUTERLY, clumsily, awkwardly. 

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l68 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CLOUT-NAILS, nails made with very large, flat heads. 

CLUBBY-SHAW, a youthful game played by two parties 
with a globular piece of wood, and a stick curved at one end 
to correspond with the ball. — Gloss, to Pitman's Pay^ 1843. 

" The fiamous feats done hi their youth, 
At bowling, ball, and clubby-shaw.'* 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i.. v. 11. 

CLUBSTER, CLUBTAIL, a stoat. 

CLUCKWEED, CLUCKENWEED, or CUKENWORT, 
chickweed, Stellaria media. 

CLUD-NUT, two nuts grown into each other. Compare 
Clutters. Two nuts grown together thus are called a 
** St. John." Three* nuts similarly intergrown are called a 
•* St. Mary." The latter, being rare, is much prized, and 
when found is usually worn in front of the finder's cap or 
hat. See Jud-nut. 

CLUFF, a cuff, a blow. " A r/«/o' the lug." To cuflf. " Aa'Il 
duff yor jsiw for ye." 

CLUFF, to strike into standing corn with the sickle. The term 
was used to distinguish from the drawing motion necessary in 
using the old serrated ''hook," which was formerly in general 
use for reaping. The "hook" was superseded by the smooth 
edged and broad bladed sickle, with which the reaper duffed 
the corn. 

CLUM, CLAM (pj. oidim), to climb. 

CLUMPER, to encumber, to pack close. ** It's sair dumpert'' 

CLUMPY, CLUMPISH, lumpy, lumpish, unwieldly. 

CLUNG, "closed up, or stopped. Spoken of hens when they 
lay not ; it is usually said of anything that is shrivelled or 
shrunk up; from ding.'' — Ray's Gloss,^ i6gi. See Cling. 

" If ihou speak false, 
Upon the next tree thou shalt hang alive 
Till famine cling thee." 

Macbeth, v. 5. 

CLUNGY, adhesive. — Brockett^ 3rd ed. 
CLUNK, to hiccup. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 169 

CLUNTER, CLOINTER, to make a noise with the feet. A 
person treading heavily with shoes shod with iron is said to 
clunUr, — Hodgson MS. 

GLUT, to strike or cufF. See Cloot, Cluff. 

CLUTE, the hoof of a cloven-footed animal. A familiar 
reference is "aad Cluty" or **Clooty" See Clooty. 

•* Clute, the half of the hoof of any cloven-footed animal." — Gloss, to 
Pitman's Pay, 1872. 

CLUTHER, a confused crowd; an entanglement, as of goods 
packed indiscriminately. 

CLUTHER, to crowd closely. "The folks wis aal cluthered 
aboot the door." 

CLUVS [N.], hoofs of horned cattle. "Atween the cluvs'' 
See Clute. 

CLYAITH (kl-yaith), cloth. 

CLYAITHIN, CLAITHIN, clothing. See Clead, Cleadin. 
Chad is the act of covering with anything Clyaithin is 
covering, or clothing, with cloth. 

CLYRE, CLYER, a sort of gland formed in the fat of beef and 
mutton. It is in the centre of the leg of mutton in the 
portion of fat called ** the Pope*s eye," and also in the fat of 
a round of beef. It is not considered good food, and is said 
to affect the curing qualities of beef in pickle. In mining, 
dyers are lumps of stone like hard nodules, as *' whin ciyerSy' 
&c. Compare Cliar, Clour. 

CO [W.-T.],tocall. 

COAD [W.-T.], cold. SeeCAAD. 

COAF [W.-T.] , a calf. 

COAL, originally, charred wood ; coal, as we now know it, was 
called sea coal, stone coal, pit coal, to indicate its character 
as a distinct substance from coal proper. In the growth 
of its use, however, the mineral took the name of coal 
exclusively, and the other became charcoal. 

To ** Carry coals to Newcastle " = ** to take a thing to where 
it is naturally plentiful ; to do what is absurdly superfluous.'' — 
Dr. Murray, New Etig. Did. This phrase was current as early 
as the seventeenth century. 



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170 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

COAL AND CANDLE LIGHT, the long-tailed duck, Harelda 
glacialiSf L* Called also Jfenny Foster. 

COAL-ENGROSSERS, an old term for the vendors of coal 
on theTyne. (Obs.) 

" Hoastmen, called in English coaU-engrossets. "—GsiTdiner, England's 
Grievance Discov.^ p. 55, ed. 1796. 

COAL-HILL, a landsale pit (which) used always to be termed 
the Coal'kilL — Raine, IJorth Durham, p. 252. CoUhill at Orde. 

COAL-HOOD, the reed bunting ; called also the black buntings 
Cinchramus schoeniclus^ Linn, 

COALING-MONEY. 

" I must take my leave of this subject of sinking, after you have been 
pleased to give your sinkers (because it is customary), the labourers 
whom I have employed for you, a piece or guinea, to drink the good 
success of the colliery, which is called their coaling money**—]. C, The 
CompUat Collier 1 1708, p. 31. 

COAL-PIPES, very thin, irregular layers, or scares, of coal. 

" The small veins of coal, called by the miners coal-pipes.*" — Mackenzie, 
Hist, of Northumberland^ 1325, vol. i., p. 85. 

Coal'Pipy, streaked with thin carbonaceous layers, as " cod-pipy 
post." 

COALSAY, COLESAY, the coal-fish. It is also called padlie 
when young, and podler, saith, or seath when somewhat larger ; 
also black jack and often rock salmon by the fishermen, as it 
bears a strong resemblance in form to the salmon. See Soil, 
Hallan, and Poodler. 

Soil is the name by which the fry is known ; they appear at Shields about 
June. " In a short time they increase to about five mches in length, when 
they are called hallan. By September thev increase to about a foot in 
length, and are then called poodlers.** — Rambles in Northumberland and on 
the Scottish Border, by Stephen Oliver, the Younger (W. A. Chatto), 1835, 
p. 23, 

COAL SHALE, shale of a highly bitumenous kind. See Jet, 
and compare Metal. 

COAL TIT, or COLE TIT, the blackcap. See also Black- 

POW-HEED. 

COALY, an old term used when the coal trade was spoken of. 

*' Pushed aw'd Coaly frev his seat, 
And ruined all/' 

T. Wilson, Dirge on Death 0/ Coaly, 1838. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I7I 

COALY, abounding in coal ; applied also to any bed approaching 
to the nature of, or mixed Tvith, coal or coaly matter. 
"Dark coaly thill." — Borings and Sinkings, A.B., p. 23. 

** Wor awd coaly Tyne, doon frae Stella to Shiels." 

T. Wilson. Stanzas, 1824. 

" Rivers arise ; whether thou be the son 
Of utmost Tweed— 
Or coaly Tine, or ancient hallowed Dee." 

Milton, A.D. 1627. 

COALY-SHANGIE, or CULLY-SHANGEY, a riot or 
uproar. 

CO ASH. A milk-maid says, ** Coash-coashy hinney!" or ^^Coash- 
coash, my lady ! " to soothe and make the cow stand during 
milking. To cows or cattle generally it is a call to urge 
them to come on quickly. 

COATS, or COTE, combined in place-names, as CuWercoats, 
and in eight other places in Northumberland. Anglo-Saxon 
cote, a hut. — ^J. V. Gregory, Archaologia ^liana, vol. ix., p. 43. 
The Duke of Northumberland's cottage allotments are called 
kwot-lsLuds. 

COB, a thick, amorphous cake or loaf of bread. It was usually 
made from the last piece of dough. (Obs.) 

COB, a blow from a ball. In the game of *' stand-all " the 
losers get their cobs, 

COB, a term in football, applied to a kick of the ball when held 
in the hand. 

COB, to pull the hair or ear, to strike, to thump. " They got 
their lugs properly cobbed,** 

COBBIN, striking, thumping ; a punishment among children 
and workmen. — Brockett, See Cog. 

COBBLE, a small boulder, such as is used in paving sidewalks. 
** To cobble with stones, to throw stones at anything."— Gros^. 

COBBLER*S-WAAK, a peculiar kind of dance performed by 
sitting down on the <* hunkers'* and closing the legs at the 
knee. It is very difficult, and from its grotesque appearance 
is sometimes called the crab-waah, 

COBBLE-TREES, double swingle-trees, whippens, or splinter 
bars. — Brockett y 3rd ed. 



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172 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

COBB'S CAUSEY, or CAASEY, a branch from the Roman 
Watling Street, at Bewclay, which leads athwart Northum- 
berland towards Berwick. Cobb is a " jotun " to whose work 
tradition attributes the making of this Cyclopean way. It 
passes near the following places : Ryal, Angerton, Hartburn, 
Netherwitton, Brinkburn, over Rimside Moor, near High 
Learchild, Glanton, Percy's Cross, Fowberry, Bowsdon and 
West Ord, then crosses the Tweed about a mile to the north 
of the latter place. 

COBBY, brisk, hearty, in good spirits. 

*' The Bankers now can sport a smile, 
And luik byeth croase and cobby ; 
Nay, they've been knawn, jast for a while, 
To ha'e been even gobby." 

T. Wilson, Captains and thi Quayside. 

COBLE, COBBLE, the north-east coast fishing-boat, an open 
or deckless craft. ** Fakene their cobblez'* {MS, Morte A rtkurcj 
fo. 61, quoted in HalliwelL) ** Cobail " in 1372. (Records ofFanu 
Islands,) Pronounced cowble in the north of Northimiberland, 
and cobble in the south of the same. The coble is built with a 
very deep cutwater ; but towards the stern, which is square, 
it is made with a widening flat bottom. It is thus a boat 
without a "keel," but the flat bottom has two bilge clogs, 
called a ** skirval." Under canvas the lines of the boat make 
her a splendid sailer, her deep bow holds the water, and her 
shallowing after-quarters allow the furrow that " follows fast '" 
to close without impeding the ** way." As the after-part draws 
only a few inches, the rudder is carried down much below 
the level of the bottom. These peculiarities necessitate the 
coble to be towed stern foremost, or, when landed, to be in like 
manner turned stern to the beach, and at the same time the 
rudder has to be unshipped. The boats thus require rapid 
and clever handling, not only in working them under their 
single mast, with its square sail and jib, but in manoeuvring 
them on approach to shore. 

COBLE-GATE, the right of salmon fishing for a coble. As 
much as can be fished by one coble. See Gate, 3. 

CO'BY ! or CO'BY, NOO ! come by; that is, come out of the 
way. It has been remarked that nearly all similar exclamations 
are given in tone of command by a Northumbrian. There is 
no " By your leave" ; and the poorer the speaker the more 
peremptory his order to stand aside. 

COCK, a thrust, a push. ** Gi's a cock up, will ye ?" See Cog. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I73 

COCK-A-RIDE-A-ROOSIE, a person who is perched or 
perked up unduly. 

COCKED, tipsy. See Cocktail. 

•• Half weft *i and canty hyem we gat." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, iii, 82. 

COCKENS, the field poppy, Papaver rhaas. It is also known 
as fire-flautf lightnings^ thunder- flower^ thunnor-cups, and stinkin- 
poppy. 

COCKER, a cock-fighter. 

*' They're racers, cockers, carders keen." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826. 

COCKERS, or COGGERS, properly, half-boots made of 
untanned leather, or other stiff materials, and strapped under 
the shoe ; but old stockings without feet, used as gaiters by 
hedgers and ploughmen, are often so called. — Brockett, 

"Cockers and Trashes, old stockings without feet, and worn-out 
shoes." — Grose, 

** A kind of rustic high shoes, or half-boots ; probably from cocking 
up." — Ware's Gloss. 

COCKET, brisk, apish, pert. — Grose. See Cocked. 

COCK-EYE, an eye set asquint. Cock-eyed^ squinting. 

COCKLE, a splatch of saliva or phlegm. 

COCKLE, to cackle. "A cocklin hen." Also to chuckle 
boastfully. 

COCKLE, to make a noise in swallowing. ** Cocklin in taking 
physic.'* 

COCKLES. These favourite bivalves are hawked about the 
wintry streets to the thrice-repeated cry of " Cockles alive !" 
The weird melancholy of this wandering chant gave a 
superstitious attribute to the " Cockle Geordy '* ; and he 
became known familiarly by the name of ** Bad-weather- 
Geordy." It was considered unlucky in certain cases to hear 
his wailing cry, and sailors averted the omen by ** breathing 
a prayer backwards." 

COCKLE-SHELL, or COCKLE-SHELL-BED, the name 
given to a highly fossiliferous bed in the Northumberland 
coalfield. Cockle-shells or mussel-shells are names given by 
sinkers to fossil bivalves. The large cockle is the Producta 
gigantea. Mussels in rocks are the Anthracosia, 



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174 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS, 

COCKLING, cheerful. 

•• A cockling person." — Brockett. 

COCKMADENDY, a self-important "dandiacal body." 

COCK OF THE NORTH, a facetious name for Newcasde. 

"The chief town of those parts." — JoccSerious Discoune between a 
Northumberland Gentleman and hts Tenant, by George Stuart, Newcastle, 
1686. 

The winter immigrant bird, the snowflake {PUctropharses 
nivalis), is called Cock of the North, snow hunting, and over-sea 
linnet, 

COCK-PENNY, a perquisite of the schoolmaster at Shrovetide. 
This used to be the season for throwing at cocks, when a 
yearly cock-fight was part of the annual routine of several of 
our northern free-schools. — Brockett. 

COCKS- AND-HENS, the stem of ribwort plantain, Plantago 
lanceolata, used by children to play at ** fighting cocks,*' Cocks- 
and-hens, the water avens, Geutn rivale. Also the name given 
to the shells of the large land snail ; those of a grey colour 
are called hens, the others are called cocks. When emptied 
of the snails, boys ** fight" the •* chucks'* by squeezing them 
together until one breaks the other. After a successful 
encounter a " cock chuck *' is said to be ** one year aad," and 
if he remains unbroken after a second " battle," " two year 
aad " ; and so on, a year being added each time. Hens are 
considered too soft for fighting, and are not considered worth 
picking up. See also Rattan-tails, 

COCKS-KAMES, the early orchis. Orchis mascula, and the marsh 
orchis, O. latifolia. The early orchis is variously called cocks- 
kames and deed man's thumb, and the marsh orchis has the 
several titles of cocks-kames, de'il's foot, deed nun's fingers, Adam 
and Eve, Cain and Abel, 

COCKTAIL, warm ale and rum, with ginger. This word 
probably means cocked ale, which came to be written as a 
single word, cocktail. To be cocked is to be tipsy, and a 
man half drunk is sometimes said to be half cocked. These 
expressions may all possibly belong to the same root. 

•• At ivery yell boose i' this toon 
We had a cocktail pot." 

J. P. Robson, " Tke Pitman*s Happy Times.*' 
Allan's Collection, p. 227. 

COCK-WOB, COCK- WEB, a cob-web. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I75 

COD, a person who has charge of a set of men at any particular 
job, but who is himself under a foreman. The word is much 
used among mechanics. — Hodgson MS. 

COD, a pillow. A cod is also the pillow or bearing of an axle ; 
and the counterpoise on the bottom-board of a smith's bellows. 
A pin-cushion is called a pin-cod, 

" Item — I give — my bed, that is to know, a feather bed, a bolster, two 
codds^hiBJikeis, two coverlets, two sheets." — Will in Richard Welford's 
Hist, of N ewe, XVI. Cent., p. 207. 

" Lay my cods a little higher." 

Ed. Chicken, The CoUur*s Wedding, 1735. 

COD, to practise deceit, to pretend. " He mun be coddinye " — 
that is, he must be deluding you. "Whe are ye coddin?'' 
is a common inquiry when one is telling an improbable 
story ; it means, ** Whom are you trying to deceive ? " 

COD-END, the bottom of a trawl net. 

•* The cod-end, that is to say, the bottom of the net."— Newcastle Daily 
Leader, October 4th, 1890, p. 4. col. 6, foot. 

CODJYBELL, the earwig. Called also twitchbell and forky- 
taU. 

COFE, a deep pit, cavern, or cave. — Brocketi^ 3rd ed. Compare 
Goaf. 

COFFIN, a cinder which has flown from the fire. If shaped 
like a coffin, it is ominous of death. On the other hand, if 
like a purse, it omens wealth. 

COFFIN-KIST, a hearse. 

" Unseetly coffin-kists.*' 

T. Wilson, Captains and the Quayside. 

COFT, bought— Northumberland.— HalliwelPs Diet. Past tense and 
part, of coffy to buy. Scottish. 

COG, to thrust, or strike on the backside. " Gi*s a cog up, 
will ye ?*' The same as cock. 

COG, COGGY, a hooped wooden vessel. A cask sawn in 
half makes two cogs. A child's porringer made of wood 
is called a cog^ ; it is often made to resemble a miniature 
milk-paU. A drinking vessel is also a cog, or coggy. 

*' Long may he live to teem a Cog." 

Dr. Charlton, Korth Tynedale, p. 96. 



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176 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

The meaning here is, long may he live to empty a cog^ or 
drinking vessel. 

COG-AND-RIING-GIN, a pit windlass worked by horses. 
The horse travelled round the pit mouth pulling a lever 
attached to a vertical shaft, and the cogs, or teeth, of a 
horizontal wheel on this shaft, worked in the rungs, or 
spokes, of a small pinion on the windlass, or drum shaft, thus 
making it to revolve in the required direction. It was the 
earliest form of horse engine, or gin, for raising coals and 
water. — R. L. Galloway, Hist, of Coal Minings 1882, p. 57. 
See Gin. 

COGGLE, to tremble, to totter, as anything does when like to 
fall. ** The waal myest coggled ower on top o' them." Hence 
coggly^ or cogglity, cranky, unsteady. "The plank wis se 
coggly 'at aa nearly tummeled off.** 

COIL, to whip, to thrash. 

COINS, COIGNS, a street comer. 

" The coins fcx>t gathering of men and boys. The coins or coignees point 
to its position as a place where nearly all thoroughfares converge.** — 
R. Forster, Hist, o/CorbridgCt 1881, p. 57. 

COL, a road scraper. It is a flat piece of iron plate, like a 
hoe, set at right angles to a shaft or handle. See Harle. 

COL, to scrape together with a col. 

COLD-FIRE, a fireplace filled with paper, sticks, and fuel 
ready for lighting. 

COLD-LORD, a boiled pudding made of oatmeal and suet. 
One mixed with suet and some treacle and sugar loses the 
cold name. — Hodgson MS. 

COLE, to put into shape, to hollow out. — Brockett. 

COLE HEAD, or COLE TIT, the cole titmouse, Parus ater. 
Called also hlach-coaUheed. 

COLLAR-LANDER, a receptacle fixed on top of the delivery 
pipe of a pump to receive the water before its delivery into 
the conduit. ** Hogger** is more commonly the term used for 
this arrangement. 

COLLAR SHANK, a rope to fasten work horses up in the 
stable. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 1 77 

COLLERENS, COLLARINGS, a framing composed usually 

of pieces of cross timber, placed under the pump joints in a 

pit shaft for the purpose of steadying and supporting the " set." 

" The collerens, which formerly supported the bratticing were all gone 

to decay.** — Robert Scott, Ventilation cf Coal Mines, p. 31, 1862. 

" Pieces of wood or iron for securing the pumps in the shaft." — 
Mining Glossary, Newcastle Terms, 1852. 

COL LEY, a lamplighter. The last of the oil lamplighters in 
Newcastle was always called a colley^ and was hailed by 
boys as — 

*' Colley wiv a lamp, colley wiv a leet, 
Colley wiv a little dog barkin at his feet.*' 

Newcastle Street Song. 

From the soot of the oil lamps and the smoke of his flambeau, 
the coiUy presented the dirty appearance of a sweep. The oil 
carried by him added a greasy condition to his clothes. 
Compare Colly. 

COLLEY, butcher's meat. The word is never used for bacon 
or salted meat. ** Ho lads, mind ye come hyem, thor's colUy 
the morn " — that is, there is to be butcher's meat, as 
distinguished from other food. Where crowdy and other 
plain fare is the staple food, colley^ or fresh meat, is a festival 
dish. Compare Collop. 

COLLIER. The common term is ** pitman" in Newcastle. 
Collier is rarely heard in use by natives. Yet the term is 
a very old localism. ** Paide for letting fourthe colters at 
Pilgrim streete gate and Newiate earlie in the morninge to 
worke, 2S. per pece each on, 4s." (Newcastle Municipal Accounts, 
1594.) It would have been interesting had the record told 
us how "earlie in the morninge" the shivering ** fore shift " 
of Elizabeth's days turned out to their darksome toil. 

COLLIER, a sea-going vessel carrying coals. 

The old phrase, **to carry coals," to put up with insults, 
to submit to any degradation, originated from the menials 
in a mansion — the " black guards " who carried wood or 
coals. They were despised as the lowest of the low, and 
the term became one of reproach. This explains the passage : 
"Gregory, o* my word, we'll not carry coals." " No, for then 
we should be colliers" [Romeo and Juliet, i., i.) 

COLLOGUIN, acting in colleague with, scheming together. 
" The baccy and yell are still dear ; 
It's just a colloguin amang them.*' 

T. R. v., Tke Politicians, 1816. 



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178 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

COLLOP, a slice of salted meat, a rasher of bacon. * CoUop 
Monday is the day before Shrove Tuesday, on which it is 
usual to have eggs and collopSy or pieces of bacon for dinner. 
On Collop Monday it was formerly customary to take leave of 
flesh for the Lenten fast ensuing. The flesh meat was 
anciently preserved through the winter by salting, drying, 
and hanging up. See Mairt. << Slices of this kind of meat 
are at this day called collops in the North, whereas they are 
named steaks when cut from fresh meat, as unsalted flesh is 
usually styled here ; a kind of food which our ancestors seem 
to have seldom tasted in the depth of winter. (Brand's 
Pop, Antiquities, 1777, p. 331.) The following rhyme gives 
an old account of the transition to Lent and the emergence 
on the great festival : — 

" Collop Monday, Pancake Tuesday, 

Ash Wednesday, Bloody Thursday, 

Long Friday *11 never be done, 

Hey for Saturday at afternoon. 

S — for Sunday at twelve o'clock, 

When the spice pudding jumps out of the pot." 

COLLY, the black or smut from coal ; called in the Northern 
counties collow or killow, — Wallis, History of Northumberland ^ 
p. 46. To blacken or make black ; from the substantive. 
" Brief as the lightning in the colly d night, 
That in a spleen unfolds the heaven and earth." 

Midsummer NighVs Dream, act i.. so. i. 
*' And passion, having my best judgment collied, 
Assays to lead the way." 

Othello, act i., sc. 3. — Nate's Gloss. 

COL-RAKE, a small hand-rake for the fireside ; not r(?a/-rake. 
See CoL. 

COLT- ALE, an allowance of ale claimed as a perquisite by 
the blacksmith on the first shoeing of a horse. Hence, a 
customary entertainment given by a person on entering 
into a new office is called "shoeing the colt.*' The first time 
a gentleman serves on the Grand Jury he is called a colt. — 
Brockctt. See Cout Ale. 

COM, came. Used instead of the more frequent cam. " He 
com in afore me." See Cam. 

" Aw com on a voyage te the toon t'other day, man." — D. C, *' Skippers 
Voyage,*' — Bards of the Tyne, p. 524. 

COMB. Seven place-names in Northumberland have this 
ending ; examples, Acomb, BdLrcombe^ &c. In some of these 
cases comb appears to be a corruption of ham. Acomb is 
anciently Akeham ; VJincomblee, Winkhamlee, &c. Compare 
Kaim. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I79 

COM'D, CUM*D, the p. part, of come. Cumnun is still in ordinary 
use, however. ** He'd oney cumtnen in a minit afore aa gat 
there mesel." 

•• They'll think thoo's com*d fra Lunnon, O ! " 

•' Wrtckenton Hiring,** 

Allan* s Collection, p. 292. 

COME, the foreward slope of a hoe or a spade. A spade or 
shovel too much bent inwards is said to have too much come. 
Compare Anchor. 

COME-AN'-GAN, an expression implying good store of 
anything, or resources. " Thor's plenty to come-an'-gan on," 
meaning there is so much that you can cut and come again, 
or that you can return again and again. It is by inversion 
applied to bodily or financial condition, as ** Poor body, he 
may we'll be deun ; he hes nowt te come-an'-gan on." 

COMELY. ** Ma comely " is a common expression, equivalent 
to my darling, or my dear. 

** Maa granny liked spice singin hinnies. 
Ma comity ! aw like thoa as weel." 

W. Midford, Pitman's Courtship, 1818. 
•• Noo, hinny — maw comely— SiVf hope ye believe 
That we wish to be cleanly an' canny." 

J. P. Robson, •• Nanny Jackson's Letter.'* 

Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 237. 

COME-THEE-WAYS ; COME-THEE-WAYS, HINNY, 
common expressions, meaning come forward ; generally 
spoken to persons in great kindness. — Brockett, " Go your 
ways," a mode of dismissal. Both phrases are in Shaks- 
peare. — HalliwelVs Diet. 

COMFORTABLE, the rowing boat formerly used for passengers 
on the Tyne. Having a roof, it was a great improvement 
on the older open passenger boat, hence the name. (Obs.) 
•• We've com/ortableSf tee, isteed, 
O' Jemmy Joneson's whurry." 

T. Wilson, Captains and the Quayside. 
*' Before steamboats became so numerous upon the T)rne, there were 
several covered passenger boats, called comfortables, which went every 
tide to and from South and North Shields." — Mackenzie, Hist, of N ewe, 
1827, p. 722. 

COMIN'-ON, invariably used instead of saying ** It's raining," 
" It's comin*-ort.** 

COMMON Y, a boy's marble made of baked clay ; the common 
marble. It is sometimes called a " muggy," as distinguished 
from a " potty," the latter being made of a fine quality of 
clay. 



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l8o NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

COMMOTHER, a godmother. The term was also used in 
addressing an aged woman. (Obs.) 

" In their communication deponent asked her and said, ' Commother^ if 
it shall please God to take you to His mercy,' &c." — R. Welford, Hht. of 
Newc. XVI. Cent., p. 379. 

CON, to miip.—Brockett. (Obs.) 

CONEEK-MAN, an Irish labourer from Connaught. 

CONSANT, constant. 

CON SATE, conceit, a self opinion. " He hes consaU on hissel, 
aa think, noo.** '' Consate's as bad as puzzon." 

CONSCIENCE, an exclamation. *'Ma conscience ! what a heed 
he hes." 

CONSIDERATION, money paid to the hewers for bad coal, 
or for any extra trouble. — Mining Gloss, y Newcastle Terms, 1852. 

CONSITHER, to consider. 

CONTRAIRY, the old pronunciation, in general use. 
•• Slippers thrust upon contrary feet 1 "Shakspeare. 

CONTRARIUS, perverse, p:iven to contradiction. ** He's a 
varry contrarius chep.*' ** YoV the contrariest bairn *at i\'ver aa 
seed.** The word is of very frequent use. 

" Yhit has the world, als men sese and heres, 

Nf a [ny] other contrarius maneres." 

Hampole, ed. Morris, line 1,590. 

" The world es Goddes enmy by skille (nature), 
That contrarius es to Goddes wille." 

The sanu, Wne i.iio 

CONVOY, a lever to which is attached a clog for the wheel of 
a coal waggon ; the old name for a »* break.** (Obs.) 

'* A person sits on the fore part of the waggon, with his foot upon a 
strong piece of wood called the convoy, and that moves on a pivot, which, 
rubbing on one of the wheels, he can increase or diminish the velocity at 
pleasure." — An Impartial History of Newcastle, 1801, p. 498. 

COO, a cow. ** An akward thing for the coo,'' The pronunciation 
of the dipthong, now sounded in modern colloquial English 
as the ou in now, is in Northumberland a marked peculiarity. 
Cooncil, council, counsel ; coonty to count ; coonter, a counter ; 
coontless, countless. In Anglo-Saxon hu, thu, nii^ cu, bruy sHr^ 
are the forms of how, thou, now, cow, brow, sour, all of them 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. l8l 

sounded in modern English as m. In Northumberland the 
words are spoken as hoo, thoo, ttoOf coo, broo, soor (long oo sound 
as in pool). Sooth^ mooihy hoose^ doon, broon, thoosaftd, for south, 
mouth, house, down, brown, thousand, are further examples of 
the same ii sound. 

COO. A coOf or ** cow," in mining, is a pole having a fork of iron 
at the end ; or a short forked iron bar hung behind a " set " 
on an incline, or on the " start " of a gin. In a forward 
movement the coo drags loosely behind, but, at any recoil, 
the forked end, being thrust into the ground by the retrograde 
movement, prevents the waggons from running " amain," or 
it enables the weight on a gin to be held when the strain 
is taken off the ** start." Compare Bull, i. 

COO, to hide oneself. ** When yor hidden, mind ye cry coo.*' A 
children's game. 

COO, to cow, to frighten, to intimidate. To •* tyek the coo " is 
to be afraid. Cooed, cowed. CooiUj disheartening, distressing. 

"It was, ne doubt, a cooin seet 
To see them hirplen 'cross the floor." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii, v. 16. 

COOERN, corn. The generic name for all grains, wheat, oats, 
barley, &c. 

COOF, a blockhead, a fool. **Yor only a coof, man, after aa 
yor brag." This word is probably a variant of coaf, or rather 
cooaf, a calf ; meaning one that is calf-hearted. 

COO-GIT, cow gate, or right of pasturage for one cow on 
common land. 

COO-GREAP, COW-GRIPE, the space or gutter between the 
rows of stalls in a cow house. The Javel Group in Newcastle 
is the ** gaol gveap " or gaol drain. 

COOK, to give in, as *'to cry cook:' Brockett says: **To' 
disappoint, to punish, to manage so as to obtain one's end, to 
circumvent." 

" To cry cok$, is in vulgar language, synonymous with CTy\n% peccavi:'— 
Brand, Popular Antiquities, 1777, p. 409. 

COO-LICK, a tuft of hair which obstinately stands up on the 
crown of the head. A "calf- lick " is the same, but above the 
forehead. 



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l82 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

COOM, the dust and scrapings of wood produced in sawing ; 
the scales of iron found lying near a smith's anvil. — Brackeit. 

COO-PAA, the left hand. " He gave us his coo-paa ; the beggar 
knaas ne better." Coo-paad is left-handed. 

COO-PLAT, a heap, or plat, of cow's dung. 

COOR, to crouch down. See Cour. 

COORSE, coarse. It is applied to rough weather. " It's a 
coofse neet.'* 

COO-SHARE, COO-SHAREN, cow's dung. 

COO-STROPPLE, a cow tie ; also ** a cowslip; that is, cow^s 
thropple, or throat — ^looking deeper than the cow's lip." — 
Brockett, under cow-stropple. (Obs.) 

"A cowstrople in the month of January, 1632, was considered sufficiently 
curious to be presented as a New Year's gift /'—See Chron. Mirab.^ p. 21. — 
HalliweU's Diet. 

COOTER, a coulter or ploughshare. 

COOTH, loving, kindly, as, ** She's a cooth bit lassie." Also 
comfortable. " Hoo are ye thi day ? " " Oh, aa's cooth" 
Compare Couther, Couthielv. 

COO-TIE, a hair rope for hobbling a cow when being milked. 

COP, to catch, " He copt a butterflee." " Run after him an' 
cop *im." Always used in the sense of siezing and correcting. 
Compare Kep. Copper, a policeman. 

COPPER-TOPT, red haired. 

COP-STYEN, a coping stone. 

COPT, over-topped, exceeded. ** Thaitcopt him " — that exceeded 
his power. 

COPT, caught. 

COPY-CHRISTY, Corpus-Christi. " Copy-Christy day." See 
Richard Welford's History of Newcastle for particulars of plays 
enacted by Incorporated Companies in Newcastle on Corpus 
Christi day, '* after the laudable and ancient custom of the 
same town." ** Corpus Christi day. May 29, 1567. For 
painting Beelzebub's cloak, 4d." (Obs.) 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 183 

CORB-STYEN, a curb stone. See also Stob, and Glentstone. 

CORBY-CRAA, the carrion crow, Corvus corone, L. Great-corby, 
the raven, Corvus corax^ L . Both these birds are now extremely 
rare in Northumberland. 

" In the latter part of the last century a raven annually built its nest in 
the steeple of St. Nicholas' Church, Newcastle." — ^John Hancock. Birds 
of Northumberland and Durham, p. 32. 

CORF, a basket made of pined hazel rods. It contained from 
ten to thirty pecks. Corves were formerly used to bring coals 
out of the pits. 

••A corf of hayre**— a basket of hair for lime.— D. Embleton, Barber 
Surgeon's Boohs, Newcastle. 

" Come, hinny, Barty, Ien*s a hand 
On wi' ma corf." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. 33. 

CORF-BOW, the handle of a corf. (Obs.) 

" Young plants of oak, ash, or aller, of about three inches thick, or 
better, for the corf -bow.*' — The Compleai Collier, 1708. 

The corf 'bow is about two yards long. It is sometimes made of iron.** — 
Brand, Hist, of Newcastle, vol. ij., 1789, p. 681, note. 

CORF-RODS, the strong hazel rods used for making corves. 

CORKER, a smart retort; sometimes called a ** settler*' — 
that is, an unanswerable reply. •* That's a corker for him." 
Billy Purvis used to say, "Tyek him away ti Ralphy Little : 
he*ll give him a corker.^' Ralphy, a noted police-officer, would 
settle his business for him. 

CORKY, soft through exposure, as wood that has suffered 
through lying too long with the bark on. See Dazed. 

CORL, to curl. 

" Aw now began te corl maw hair 
(For corls and tails were then the go)." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1843 ed., pt. iii. 

CORLYCUE, a flourish in writing — a twisted or curly tail. 

CORLY-DODDIES, the field scabious, Scahiosa arvensis, 

CORN, to feed with com. " Is the horses corned yit ? *' 



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184 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CORNAGE, or castle-guard rent of the North of England, 
was originally a payment in lieu of cattle, and called in 
English horngeld and neatgeld, cattle tax, or ox lay. — Hodgson, 
Nortkumbeylandy iii., 2, p. 322. (Obs.) 

"It may either mean simply a Crown rent (Coronagium), or a rent 
payable in horned cattle (Cornuagium), — Archaologia Mliana^voX. i., new 
series, p. 44. 

CORN-BARRIES, red or white currants. 

CORN-BUNTING, the common bunting, Miliaria Europea. 

CORNEY, in liquor. (Obs.) 

*' Yen day when aw was corneyy 

T. Thompson, d. 18 16, Jemmy Joneson's Whirry. 

CORNEY, prolific; applied to corn when the ears are well 
filled. Compare Gifty. 

CORNEY-DOLL, KERN-DOLL, KERN-BABBY, 
or MELL-DOLL. These variant forms represent the name 
of the figure borne home formerly on the last load of com 
from the harvest field. The corney-doll was an image made 
by dressing up a sheaf of corn to appear like a rude human 
figure, which was mounted on the top of the last cart-load 
taken from the field. See Kern and Kern-doll. 

CORP, a corpse. ** He was browt hyem a corp.'' 

•• A corp they're gaun te harry." 

T. Wilson, Captains and the Quayside. 

CORP-CANDLE, a thick candle placed in a candlestick of 
a peculiar form — used formerly at ** lake-wakes." — Brocketi. 
(Obs.) 

CORPORATION, the stomach. 

" ' He has a good corporation,* when applied to an individual, means 
that he is not deficient in accommodation for the entertainment of his 
viscera." — Hodgson MS. 

CORRAN-DUMPLIN, the great hairy willow-herb, EpUohium 
hirsutum. Called in N. Northumberland apple -dumplins. 

CORRANS, CORNS, currants. ** Reed corr'n harries,'' red 
currants. 

" Ah. hinnies! about us the lasses did lowp, 
Thick as curns in a spice singing hinnie." 

T. Thompson, Canny Newcastle. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 185 

CORR'NY-DOOS, cakes with currants in them, or tea-cakes 
as they are called. [North Tyne.] Doo^ dough. Compare 

YULE-DOO. 

CORSE, to curse, ** Corsin an sweerin." 

CORTAINE, the defensive court attached to a house. See 

COURTAIN. 

"Cartine, or curtain. Only an antiquated spelling." — Nares. 

CORVE, a curve, a bend. Sometimes used for corf, 

CORVE, to cut. See Kirve. 

CORVER, the man who makes and repairs corves. The 
corver is paid in the following singular way : ** He is allowed 
4jd. for every score of corves that are brought up the shaft, 
lor which he is bound to find the pit with as many corves as 
are wanted, and also to keep them up to their exact measure, 
and in good repair.'* — Brand, Hist, of Newcastle, vol. ij, 1789, 
p. 681, note. (Obs.) See Corf, Corves. 

" His feytber kept a, carver's shop, 
His mother tuik in sewing." 

J. P. Robson, Hamlick, Prince 0' Denton. 

•• And whereas I speak of corves, or baskets to put the coals in, we must 
have a man (which is called a corver) to make them." — The Compleai 
Collier, 1708, p. 34. 

CORVES, the plural of corf, which see. 

COSSEN, the p.p. of cost. ** It's cossen a mint o' money." 

COSTRIL, a little barrel.— Gm^. 

COT, the strong p.t. of the verb to cut. ** He cot his finger," 

COT, to mat together, to ravel or hankie. Hair for want of 
combing gets cotted, A cotied temper is one difficult to please. — 
Hodgson MS. 

COT. See Cat, 2. 

COTE [N.] , a cat. 

COTE, or COATE, a house or cottage. Coaie-lsLnd, land 
attached to a cottage. See Coats. 

COT-HOOSE, the house of a cotter. See Cotter. 

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l86 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

COTS, inferior sheep skins, in which the wool is tangled. See 
Cot, 2. 

COTTER, a woman worker on a farm without male relations 
in the house with her in the same employment. 

COTTERED, applied to stone or coal, hard, cross-grained, 
tough. — Gf unwell, 

COTTERIL, a check or split pin put through a slot in the 
end of a bolt to hold it on the inside. 

COTTERILS, money, coin. 

'* When wark's flush, for time o* want 
Lay by some cottriU i* the blether." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 59. 

" The loss o' the cotterils aw dinna regaird." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Canny Newcastle. 

COUCH, the hole or earth of the otter. Also called the hold. 

COUH, to cough. The gh sound is that of a heavy guttural 
breathing, quite unlike the modem pronunciation of kof. 
Compare Rouh, for rough. 

COUL, COWL, to scrape together dung, mud, dirt, &c. To 
smooth the surface of what is gathered. — Brockett. 

COUL-RAKE, COWL-RAKE, the instrument with which 
couling is performed. — Brockett. He adds, •* This term is also 
used for a fire-iron, in which sense it is more properly a coal- 
rake." But see Col, which is apparently a variant otcoid 
and quite distinct from coal. 

COULTERNEB, the puffin, Fratercula artica, L. 

COUNGE, to he3it— Northumberland.— Halliweirs Diet. 

COUNGE, a large lump of bread or cheese. 

" Bring him fpoor fella) a shive oh butter an breed ; cut him a good 
counge : an strenkle a leap'yt ov sugar ont." — ^Thomas Bewick, The Howdy, 
Sec, ed. 1850, p. 10. 

COUNTRY-KEEPER. So lately as the year 1701, the police 
of Tindale and Reedsdale was maintained by officers called 
country- keepers J who, for a certain sum, ** insured" their own 
districts against theft and robbery, and in case of their taking 
place, made good the loss." — Mackenzie, Hist, of Northumber- 
land, 1825, vol. i., p. 66. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 187 

COUNTRY-SIDE, the district, as distinguished from a 
particular spot. *^ She's the best mear, aa tell ye, iv aa the 
cauntry-side "—that is, for miles around. 

COUP, to upset, to barter ; to exchange cavils. See Cowp. 

COUPLES, the roof principals ; anciently cauples of chevrons, 

COUR (pron. coofy or coo-er), to bend or stoop down. ^^Coor 
doon, or ye'll get hitten." ' 

"They coure so over the coles, theyr eyes be bleared with smoke." — 
Gammer Gurton, in Nare's Gloss., under courb. 

"Virtue itself of vice must pardon beg, 
Yea courb and woo, for leave to do it good." 

Hamlet t act iii., sc. 4. 

COURSE, in coal mining, is the direction in which the mine is 
wrought. The broadways course is the direction in which the 
boards are wrought — the headways course is the direction at 
right angles. — Byockett, 3rd ed. 

COURSIN THE AIR, " causing the air to circulate through 
every passage of the several workings of a pit. This was 
devised about 1760 by Mr. Spedding, of Whitehaven." — • 
T. John Taylor, Archaology of the Coal Irade^ p. 202. 

'* The system was first adopted on the Tyne at Walker Colliery about 
1763.*' — R. L. Galloway, History of the Coal Trade, i88a, pp. 106-7. 

COURTAIN, a yard belonging to farm buildings for enclosing 
cattle, sometimes called the **fad'* (fold). It will be remem- 
bered that cattle folds on the Border were generally arranged 
for purposes of defence ; the application, therefore, of a term 
in fortification to a cattle fold seems natural. See Cortaine. 

COUT, COWT, a colt. ** Wether, cowt, an' steer." (James 
Armstrong, Wanny Blossoms, 1879, p. 5.) Also a man of 
strength, stature, and activity. **The word, which ought 
rather to be spelled cowty is understood in this sense in the 
neighbourhood of Keilder, as well as on the opposite Scottish 
Border." (Richardson, Table Book Leg, Div., vol. ij., p. 162.) 
** The Cout of Keilder is represented by tradition to have been a 
powerful chief of this district. Cout — that is, colt." (S. Oliver, 
Rambles in Northumberland y 1835, p. 161.) 

COUT- ALE, COWT- ALE, allowance to the blacksmith, 
when a young horse is first shod. See Colt-ale. 

COUTHER, to comfort. See Cooth. 

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l88 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

COUTHIELY, pleasantly, kindly, neighbourly. 

*' Sae couthiely then they cried on me ben. ' 

James Armstrong, Wanny Blossoms, 1879, p. 134. 

COUTOR-LASHER, an effective check ; a blanking or 
disappointing stroke, as in playing a trump card. '* That's 
a couior 'lasher for ye, noo ! " 

COVE, a cavern, a cave. — Brockett. 

COVER, the roof of a coal seam. — Brockett^ 3rd ed. Also " the 
strata between the seam (of coal) and the surface." — 
Nicholson, Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, 1888. 

COW. Kow^ or Cowy a local sprite. " The VLeSLey Kow" See 
Coo. 

COW, to clip the hair, to trim. (Obs.) 

" I garr'd a Barber come to me, 
He Cow'd my Beard as you may see." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse^ 1686. 

CO'WAA, or CO' WAY, come away, get out of the way. Very 
commonly used as a colloquialism, and suggesting impatience 
and contempt when uttered abruptly. *• Co-way there ! wi'ye, 
what are ye stannin' starin' for ? " 

COWANS, clotted wool on sheep. 

COW-BAT, a blow given by one boy to another to provoke him 
to fight. "There's your challenge, and there's your cow-hat.'' 

COW-BERRY, the red whortle-berry, Vaccinium vitis-idaa^ L. 

COW-BLAKES, cow dung dried, used for {ewcl—Rays Gloss. 
Called also casins. (Obs.) 

COWEY, a hornless beast. A coweet-cow is a hornless cow. 
Compare Cow, to clip. 

COW-GAP, the time when cows are taken on or off" for the 
grazing season. (Obs.) 

•• Spent at the Cow gapp with the grassmen, 7s. 2d." -^Gateshtad Church 
Books, 1672. 

•• Every freeman and borough man—pay at the cow gapp for this present 
year for every particular cow 3s."— 7Af same, 1677. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 189 

COW-GRASS, a name among farmers for common purple 
clover, very good for cattle, but very noisome to witches. In 
the days when there were witches in the land, the leaf was 
worn by knight and by peasant, as a potent charm against 
their wiles ; and we can even yet trace this belief of its magic 
virtue in some not unobserved customs. — ^Johnson's Flora of 
Berturck-upon-T weedy p. 163. It is the Trifolium medium. Called 
also wild sookies and zig-zag. 

COW-JOCKEY, a beast johher. —Brockett, 3rd ed. (Obs.) 

COWK, or GOWK, to strain, to vomit.— Halliweirs Dict.,cowh. 

COW-KEEKS, the cow parsnip or hogweed, Heracleum 
sphondylium. Called also helks, or kecks. 

COWLD, cold ; but more frequently caad. " It's a cowld day.*' 
**It's as caad as ice." 

COWLEADIN, the game of "follow your leader." A game in 
which the leader does the most difficult things he can, and 
which the others must do likewise. 

COWP, to upset. "That's cowp'd his apple cairt for him, noo." 
General. 

*'Cowpt corves i' the barroway." 

T. Wilson. Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. 55. 

COWP, COAP [W.-T.] , to barter, to exchange. " Aa'll cowp 
wi' ye— gi' the galloway for the mear an five pun to beut." 

" When the men (in a pit) exchange working places, they are said to 
cowp." — Mining Gloss., Newcastle Terms, 1852. 

COWPIN-WORD, the last word. 

" Thonll hae the cowpin-word thysel, 
Or tawk for everlastin twang." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 39. 

COWP-UP-CAIRT, a tip cart ; a cart that can be cowped or 
tipped up, the shafts being attached to the body by a pin for 
the purpose. It is also called a '* short cairt," to distinguish 
it from the " lang cairt '* which does not cowp. 

COWP-YOR-CREELS, that is, to turn completely over, head 
over heels; to turn a somersault. 

" Amang the rest aw cowp'd me creels^ 
Egoxl 'twas funny, varry. 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Jemmy Joneson's Wherry, 



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igO NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

COW-QUAKES, the common quake-grass, Briza media. Called 
also dotherin-dichsy tremliu-grass^ quakin-grass, and ladies' -hair. 

COWS, bare branches of whin or ling after their leaves are 
decayed or burnt off. — Hodgson MS. Compare Cow, 2. 

COWT-FWOAL, a young male horse whilst sucking. The 
female of the same age is a filly -fwoal, 

COX, an exclamation. The oath is now heard as Gock or Gox. 
" Aw waddent tyek the jaw fre the likes o* him, hegock I " ** By 
gox, what a fyce ye've getten ! ** Cock, says Nares, is a vulgar 
corruption or purposed disguise of the name of God. Hence, 
by cock, by cock and pye, and such softened oaths. 

" I's cox't if my words preave no true." — Joco -Serious Discoursi, New- 
castle. 1686, p. 26. 

" By cock, they are to blame."— if i»fi/«^ act iv., sc. 5. 

Shallow: "By cock and pye, sir, you shall not away to night.**— 
Henry /F"., pt. ii., act v., sc. i. 

COYSTRIL, a young fellow. [Kersey and Bailey.] Properly 
an inferior groom, or a lad employed by an esquire to carry 
the knights* arms or other necessaries. — Nare's Gloss, A raw, 
inexperienced lad; a contemptible young fellow. — Brocket. 

COZY, a cover, like a thickly-padded cap, placed over a teapot, 
as a non-conductor of heat, to keep the tea hot on the table. 

COZY, COZEY [W.-T.] , a causeway, a footpath. 

CRAA, CRAW, the small lever used for drawing the linch- 
pin from carts. There is also a "shekkle craw'* used for 
drawing bolts from wood. 

CRAA, CRAW, speech ; sometimes boastful speech. 

" It might suen stopp'd me craa.'* 

" Geofdy's Disaster.'* 

AUan*s Collection, 1863, p. 166. 

CRAA, CRAW, the rook, Corvus frugilegus. ** Black as a cnw." 
" He lyuks like a scare-cma.'* " When you see the cloodslike 
craa'SCT2Lts an' fillies* tails, look oot for squalls "^-often used 
in describing a peculiar aspect of the sky. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I9I 

CRAA, CRAW, a cock-crow, or to crow like a cock. 

"A cock crowing at a door is a sign of a visitor coming." — Rev. J. F. 
Bigge, Superstitions at Stamfordham.—Nat. Hist. Trans., 1860-62, vol. v., 
p. 92. 

"The gorcock craws crouse." — J. Armstrong, Wanny Blossoms^ 1879, 
p. 69. 

** Acraain*hem.nd a whistlin* maiden's twee unsonsy things." — Newcastle 
proverb. 

" 'Mang cantrips, charms, as hurtfu' 'een, 
And things unlucky to be seen, 

Plann'd by auld schemy clootie, 
A croonin' cow, a crawin' hen, 
A whistling maid, fa' weel ye ken, 
Are deemed aye unlucky. 

Cuddy had a crawin' hen, 

And muckle did it grieve him ; 
For what ane 'twas amang his ten 

That did of luck bereave him 

He kent na — " 

L. Proudlock, 1820, song, Cuddieand his Crawin* Hen. 

CRAA, CRAW, an outcrop or crop of strata. ^^Craw coal" 
appears in sections of sinkings at Bannamoor pit, Eglingham. 
(George Tate, in Bwks, Nat. Club, vol. v., p. 285.) It there 
appears two feet in one section and four feet thick in another. 

. " The crow-coal is a thin seam of coal worked in the South Tyne, 
obtained from grooves made in the craw, or crop of the strata." — Hodgson, 
Hist, of Northumberland, vol. iii., pt. ii., p. 33. 

•• The crow-coal at Mickley Colliery is 2 feet 4 inches thick. It bums 
like a candle and will bear a polish equal to glass. It is highly bituminous, 
resembling cannel coal." — Borings and Sinkings, L.R., p. 83. 

'* Crow-seams, thin coal seams of three or four inches thick." — Hugh 
Miller, Geology ofOtterburn and Elsdon. — Memoir Geological Survey, 1887. 

CRAA-CROOK, the black crowberry, Empetrum nigrum. Called 
also the crow-berry and crake-berry. Craa-crook is an admirable 
example of the manner in which the burr is spoken. It has 
been described as sounding to Southern ears " like the dying 
croak of an expiring raven." 

** Everywhere common on heaths, ascending from Prestwick Carr to all 
the peaks, 850 yards on Cheviot." — Nat. Hist, Trans., vol. ii., new series, 
p, 244. 

CRAADENLY, cowardly. 

CRAADON, CRAWDON, CRADDIN, a coward. One boy 
refusing to fight another after a challenge will hear : " Yo'r 
a crawdon.'* ** A craadon cock," a cowardly cock. A term 
used when cock-fighting was practised. [N.] Mr. George 
Thompson, in a note on this word, says ** he enquired of a 
Northumberland man if he knew what a crawdon was." 



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192 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

'* AaVe heerd it," replied his informant. •* Aa once heerd a 
man tell another he wis a * crawdon hen/ *' ** What did he 
mean by that?" **Aa understeud him ti mean 'at he wis 
like a hen 'at tries te craa like a cock." A crowing hen is 
considered a very unlucky thing about a house, and it can by 
no means be permitted to strut and fret with impunity. See 
Craa, 4. 

CRAAL, to crawl. 

CRAA-NEBS, or LADY'S-FINGERS, the plant Anthyllis 
vulneraria, 

CRAA-PEAS, the peas of the meadow vetchling, Lathyrus 
pratensis. 

CRAA-TAES, the common lotus, Lotus corniculatus. Also called 
caVs clover. 

CRAB, a capstan, for raising or lowering of pumps, &c., in a 
pumping pit. — Mining Gloss. Newcastle Terms, 1852. A lifting 
winch. 

CRAB-ROPE, the rope used on a crab, 

CRABBY, crabbed, testy. ** He's a crabby aad chep." 
" The crabby awd dealers in ling, cod, and brats." 

T. Wilson, The Movement, 1839. 

CRACK, to gossip, to brag, to boast. 

*' God's benison light on your heart, 
We'll crack a bit before we part." 

Joco-Serious Discourse, Newcastle, 1686, p. 9. 
•* They laughed and cracked about the joke.** 

W. Armstrong, d. 1833-4, Skipper's Mistake. 
" Since the horse-couping he began, 
He had great cause to crack of wealth.*' 

Bernard Rumney. ** Eckys Mare.^* 
Bell's Rkyms, 1812. 
•* There will be Sam the quack doctor, 
Of skill and profession hell crack.*' 

Song, •« Tke Skipper's Wedding^ 
Bell's Rhymes, 181 2. 
*' I had a few days' fishing, but nothing to crack on." 

J. Armstrong, Wanny Blossoms, 1879, p. 172. 

CRACK, light talk, conversation, boasting. 

"Bncclughe and the rest of the Scottes made some bragges and 
crackes.'*— Letter of 1595 in Dr. Charlton's North Tynedale, p. 72. 
" He ne*er was slack 
To give the company all his crack." 

Thomas Wilson, Charley. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I93 

CRACK, an instant, a moment. 

" A highwayman fellow slip't round in a crach. 
And a thump o' the skull laid him flat on his back." 

W. Midford, d. 1851, Cappy. 

CRACK, super-excellent. " A crack tryst " is a first-rate fair. 
The park keeper's house at Meldon, " a crack specimen of 
the architecture of the seventeenth century." — Hodgson, 
Hist, of Northumberland^ pt. ij., vol. ii., p. 3. 

*' The crack o' whuslers i' maw day, 
Maw gew-gaw touch was te the life ; 
And at yentime 'could nearly play 
• God syev the King * upon the fife ! " 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. iii., p. 38, ^843 ed. 

CRACKED, half-witted, mad. 

CRACKER, a small baking dish. — Grose's Gloss, Also a hard 
biscuit. 

CRACKER, an explosive firework. Also the drop of glass 
known as ** Prince Rupert's drop," which shivers to powder 
on being broken. 

CRACKET, a low seat without legs, as distinguished from a 
stool. 

*' The bonny pit laddie, the cannie pit laddie, 
The bonnie pit laddie for me, O ! 
He sits on his cracket, and hews in his jacket, 
And brings the white siller to me, O ! " 

•• The Bonny Pit Laddie." 

Bell's Rhymes, 1812. 
*'They found old Goody smoking fast, 
Placed on a cracket near the fire.'* 

Ed. Chicken, The Colliers Wedding, 1778. 

CRACKETS, the game of cricket. 

CRACKIN-CROOSE, bold confident. ---Brockett, 3rd ed. 
Boastful talk. 

CRACKLINGS, tallow chandlers' refuse. 

CRADDINS, to lead craddins, to play mischievous tricks. — 
Grose's Gloss.y 1739. (Obs.) Compare Craadon, Craadenly. 

CRADLE, CREDDLE, a suspended scaffold used in shafts. — 
Mining Gloss. Newcastle Terms, 1852. Or a cage swung upon 
gimbals. The tubs from the cage are run into a cradle, which 
tips up and turns them upside down so as to empty the coals 
on to the screen. 

M 



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194 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CRAIG, the neck. 

" 'Twas sometime gane, they tuik our naigs, 
And left us eke an empty Byre 
I wad the deil had had their craigs 
And a' things in a bleeze o' fire." 

The Fray o' HautwesselL 

" Ane gat a twist o' the craig:' 

Surtees, Ballad of Feathentonehaugh, 

" Some were sae keen upon the point, 
They danc'd their craigs quite out o* joint." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Sirious Discourse, 1686. 

" He staik'd his craig." 

The same, p. 46. 

CRAIG, a crag. See under Dodd. 

" A craig is used both to signify a cliff and the precipitous side of a 
hill."— S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. 87, note. 

CRAIG-CLAITH, a cravat. (Obs.) 

** And syne I drew this craig-claith out. " — Joco-Serious Discourse, Newcastle, 
1686, p. 15. 

CRAITCH, to complain peevishly and persistently. Same as 
Crake, 2. 

CRAKE [ W.-T.] , to gossip, to boast. See Crack. 

" Monny oh them keept crakin oh the baym an tippin its cheeks/*— 
Thomas Bewick, The Upgetting, ed. 1850, p. 13. 

CRAKE, to whimper, or plaintively ask for a thing over and 
over again. To ** herp " for a thing or to " yammer " for 
anything have much the same meanings as to crake. To croak. 
" What are ye crakin on there for — a-ah ? '* See Craitch. 

" The carrion craws about them flying 
Will keep a craiking*^ 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 47. 

CRAKEBERRY or CROWBERRY, the berry-bearing heath, 
Empetrum mgrum. See Craacrook. 

CRAME, a stall or stand on which any kind of merchandise, 
chiefly sweet-stuff" or smallwares, is exposed at country fairs 
or hirings. The crarne is a jointed stall, easily taken to pieces 
and re-erected. 

" Off to a crame-stand wi' a dash, 
An' boucht her sugar candy 
In lumps that day." 

The Fair, by David Walter Purdie, 1888. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 195 

CRAME, to mend a vessel. China or earthenware is cranud 
by holing and wiring it at the broken edges. Wooden bowls 
are cramtd in the same way, or more effectively by driving 
across the fracture a thin strip of iron shaped like an S. 

CRAMER, a tinker or mender of broken china, &c. (Obs.) 
See Mugger. 

CRAMLEY, shaking, or ** dothering," or weak in the legs. 
" Hallo, there ! Yo'r varry cramley i' the legs thi day ** — a 
morning salutation to one tottering in his gait. 

CRAMP, to wedge or jam up tightly.. 

CRAMPER, an astounding lie. 

CRAMPET, a hook attached to the ends of the back-band in 
the gear of plough horses, from which the chains can be 
suspended. In pit language, a bracket. 

CR AMPLE, to crumple. " Aa say ! yor cramplin maa goon." 

CRAMP-RING, a ring made out of the handles of decayed 
coffins, and supposed to be a charm against the cramp. 
Hence the name. Formerly these rings were consecrated by 
the kings of England, who affected to cure the cramp, as well 
as the king's evil. — Brocketty 3rd ed. In Nares* Gloss, their 
supposed virtue in preventing the cramp is said to be 
conferred by solemn consecration on Good Friday, among 
the ceremonies of that great day. — Brand's Popular A ntiquitUs, 
4to ed., vol. i., p. 128. (Obs.) 

CRANCH, CRUNCH (often spoken as scranch or scrunch), to 
grind with a crackling noise between the teeth, as in eating a 
hard crust; or to grind the teeth themselves. '^ Cranchmg 
yor teeth." 

" Sand thrown on the floor is said to cranch under the feet." — 
Hodgson MS. 

CRANE, the junction between the branch railways and the 
horse roads in a pit. Here they formerly used to hoist the 
corves of coal from the tram to the rolley ; the coals being 
"put" to this spot by the barrow-men from the working 
places. From the crane they were drawn by horses to the 
shaft. It is now called a **flat" or ** station." 

••We commenced our survey at the crane, going up west." — Robert 
Scott, Ventilation of Coal Mines, p. 27, 1862. 

CRANEBOARD, a return air course in a pit, connected 
directly with the furnace. 



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196 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CRANEMAN, the lad in the pit who hoisted the corves of 
coals on to the rolleys with the crane. — Gloss, of Coal Trade 
Terms, 1849, 

CRANK, bent, shaky, as a machine out of repair ; hence 
probably applied to a person who is mentally wrong or 
eccentric. See Cranky, 2. 

CRANK, to make a harsh noise, to creak. 
•• The door cranhs.*'—Brockett, 

CRANKLE, weak, shsittered.—Brochtt. 

CRANKS, a fireside contrivance consisting of two or more 
rows of iron crooks set in a frame and used for toasting 
bread. The frame stands on its own feet before the fire. 
This utensil is sometimes called **a branks.'* 

CRANKY, crank, tottering. Applied to a person, it means one 
whose mind is off" the balance — a flighty person. ** Crazy 
or cranky,** Or it means a person weak and poorly and almost 
tottering through illness. " Aa*s nobbut cranky-like thi day." 

CRANKY, checked, or of a zig-zag pattern, as "a cranky 
neckcloth," **a cranky apron." When the pattern of a piece 
of cotton is made in bent figures it is a cranky article. See 
Crank, i, bent. 

CRANKY. The pitman formerly was called Cranky ^ or Bob 
Cranky. In his dress on a "gaady day " that old-world pit- 
man must have been impressive, for he says : — 

" *A pat on my blue coat that shines se, 
My jacket wi* posies se fine see, 

My sark sic sma' threed, man, 

My pig-tail se greet, man, 
Od smash ! what a buck was Bob Cranky. 

Blue stockings, white clocks, and reed garters, 
Yellow breeks, and my shoon wi* lang quarters, 

A' myed wour bairns cry, 

Eh ! sarties ! ni ! ni I 
When they saw the smart, clever Bob Cranky" 

Bob Cranky's *Size Sunday, 1804. 

The term cranky given by outsiders to the pitman was in later 
times replaced by ** Geordy." The men who went from the 
lower Tyneside to work at the pits in South Tynedale were 
always called "Geordies" by the people there. Cranky 
probably comes from the checked pit flannel clothes much 
affected, when new and unsoiled, as a swagger costume. 
** Howky *' is another name for a pitman. See Cranky, 2. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I97 

CRAP, or CRUP {pJ. of creep), crept ; p.p. cruppen or crup. 
" He'd cruppen oot " — he had crept out. 

•• While Cappy's transactions with grief they talked o'er, 
He crap out o' the basket quite brisk on the floor." 

W. Midford, Cappy, 1818. 

CRATCH, a rack of any kind, a manger, a cradle. — Halliweirs 
Diet. A manger, particularly that in which our Saviour was 
laid. — Nares* Gloss, "This opens to us," continues Nares, 
'* the meaning of a childish game, corruptly called scratch- 
cradle *' (cafs-craidle in Northumberland, &c.), ** which consists 
in winding pack-thread double round the hands, into a rude 
representation of a manager, which is taken off by the other 
player on his hands, so as to assume a new form, and thus 
alternately for several times, always changing the appearance. 
But it clearly meant originally the cw/cA-cradle, the manger 
that held the Holy Infant as a cradle." 

CRAVE, to ask, to demand a claim or debt. To crave a person 
for a loan or debt before they are able spontaneously to pay 
it is an unpardonable insult, of which the offender never fails 
to hear on every available occasion. 

CRAW. See Craa and following words, also Crow-coal. 

CRAYER, a small sailing vessel. It is elsewhere called a 

Cray, 

** Acrayerof Newcastle, laden with malveysey, &c.** — Richard Welford, 
Hist, of Newcastle XVI. Cent., under date 1513, p. 36. 

CRAZED, vexed. " He wis that crazed wiv us ! " It also 
meant, formerly, a condition of bodily suffering. 

'* Beinge of perfect mind and memorie, thoughe verie craysed and sore 
wounded in his bodye.'* — Will of Wm. Clavering, of Duddoe» 1586. — 
D. D. Dixon, Vale of Whittingham, 1887, p. 40. 

CREANGE, to crackle, as thin ice does in breaking, or as 
woodwork when it is crushed. 

CREATUR, a creature. The t-ch sound is not used in the 
dialect in any case. ** The poor creatur was the pictur o' 
distress." 

CREE, CREEVE, a pen or fold. " A pig-cr^." The form is 
also criefsiud creeve, as **a swine-cnV/" or " pig-creeve.** 

CREE, to crush, to husk wheat or barley in preparing it for 
boiling as fromerty. 



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igS NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CREEIN-TROW, a stone trough, formerly in general use as a 
mortar, in which grain was creeds or pounded, till its husks 
came off. The grain was then boiled with milk. See 
Knockin-trow. 

CREEL, a kind of basket of wickerwork in which hay is taken 
in stormy weather to sheep on the mountains. Its sides are 
stiff; its bottom supple. This is called a sheep-^rw/. Baskets 
and pins (pens) for poultry, and wicker utensils for various 
other purposes are called cruls, — Hodgson MS. The creel of a 
Cullercoats fish-wife is a very fine example of basket-work, 
fitting to the back, and showing a most graceful form of 
construction throughout. In the days of toasts and sentiments 
the following rhyme was a common formula : — 

" Health, wealth, milk an' meal ; 
Here's tiv ivery thinkin chiel ; 
May the de'el rock him weel iv a crsel. 
If he disna wish aall on us weel." 

CREEL, to put or pack in a creel. To throw the leg over the 
head of another person. This is generally practised by 
children, who say after doing it : •* There noo, aa've creeled 
thoo an thoo'll nivver grou ne bigger." See Crile. Compare 

COWP-YOR-CREELS. 

CREEP, ** a state of the mine produced by an insufficiency of 
coal left to support the roof, and which often forces the top 
and bottom of the mine together, and renders the pit unfit for 
further use." — Gloss, to Pitman's Pay^ 1843. 

"A heaving up of the floor of the mine, occasioned by the weight of 
the superincumbent strata." — Mining Gloss. Newcastle Terms, 1852. 

*• An when life's last stook's tyen away, 
And nowse but wyest and ruin near ; 
When creep comes ower wor wrought-out clay, 
And all s laid in for ever here." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829. pt. iii., v. 122. 

CREEPERS, the sensation of chill on the skin from cold, or the 
creeping of the flesh from some blood-curdling fright or fear. 

CREESER, a waggon greaser. 

CREESH, CREESE, to grease.— J. P. Robson, Gloss, to Bards 
oftJu TyfUf 1849. 

CREESHY, greasy. 

" see this Lown-like Lordan squeeze 

His chreeshy-baggs, and Laugh, and Fleer." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 31. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. I99 

CREEVE, an enclosure. See Cree, i. 

CREEVE, CREUVE, a crab or lobster trap. A sort of case 
covered with net, weighted with a heavy stone and let down 
to the bottom. A hole at each end allows entrance but 
prevents egress. Creeves are made about two to three feet long 
by twelve to eighteen inches high. See Cruive. 

CREEVEL, crewel, fine worsted yarn. 

CREPT PILLARS, pillars of coal which have passed through 
the various stages of creep. — Greenwell. See Creep. 

CRIB, or CRIBBIN, the circle of wood wedged tight in a pit 
shaft, to make a foundation for walling when the strata are 
loose. — Mining Gloss. Newcastle Ternis^ 1852. Or the lining of 
wood or iron put round a pit shaft to dam back the water in 
water-bearing strata. A crib used as a foundation for metal 
tubbing or for walling is called a wedging crib, A walling crib 
is a lining of stone or firebricks made to the sweep of the 
shaft and built in where the strata are loose. A ring crib is 
an arrangement for catching water which would otherwise 
fall down the shaft. See Tubbing. 

CRIB, a boy small for his age. ** Wey, that bairn's a parfit 
cribr 

CRIB, to line around 

•' The sinking was cribbed, and backed, then walled." — Borinjs and 
SinkingSt A.B., p. 10. 

•' A giblet pie, 
Cribb'd roun* wi' coils o' savoury pudden.'' 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v, 28. 

CRIBBAGE, CRIBBISH, one side or division of a stall in a 
stable. 

CRIBLE, to cringe, to curry favour with a superior. ** Aa's 
not gan to crible tiv him.*' " He went away cribled " — " He 
went away as if with his tail between his legs." 

CRIEF. See Cree, Creeve, Cruive. 

CRIKE, CRIKEY, an oath. Often becrike. 

CRILE, a poor and deformed person. Sometimes applied in 
contempt. ** Ye crile^ ye ! '' 

Cfeil, " a short stubbed dwarfish man." — Ray's Gloss, 
** To pass the leg over the head of a child is vulgarly supposed to crile 
or stop Its growth."— BrofA««, 3rd ed. 



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200 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CRINE, to pine in, to shrink or shrivel up. ** YeVe had ower 
het a fire ; it's crined the meat." 

CRINEY, small and shrivelled. " The corn '11 be varry crituy 
an' smaall this 'eer." 

CRINGLE, a withe or rope for fastening a gate with. — Brockdt. 

CRINGLE-CRANGLE, zig-zag, wrinkle.— Br(?^;fe^^^ 

CRIT, the smallest of a litter of pigs, &c. In metaphor — a 
small-sized person. " Tom's the crit i' the femily." 

CROAK, to give up the ghost. 

" Baith of ten's wished the yen was croakin.*' 

J. P. Robson, "Betty Beesley:' 

Bards of the Tyne, p. 157. 

CROCKER, one outside of a trade mystery. (Obs.) 

'* No brother shall be partner with any foreigners called crockets, on 
pain of forfeiting £5*^— -Ordinary of the Butchers' Company, Newcastle, 
July 20, 162 1. 

CROCKY, a little Scotch covr. —Grose's Gloss. 

CROFT. 

" A small parcel of ground lying near the dwelling of the owner, but 
not necessarily adjoining it." — ^The Rev. Canon Greenwell, Gloss, to the 
Boldon Buke. 

The Croft, in Newcastle, " a small field, bounded on the east side by 
the town wall, and on the west by the garden walls of the houses in 
Pilgrim Street. It formerly belonged to the family of Carlels, or Carliols. 
from whom it was called the Carle, or Carliol Croft." — Mackenzie, Hist, of 
Newcastle^ p. 179. 

" A house and a rig lying in the Croft, value 6s. 8d." — Richard Welford, 
Hist, of Newcastle XVI. Cent., p. 87. 

" — ^This have I learnt 
Tending my flocks hard by i' th' hilly crofts 
That brow this bottom glade.** 

Milton, Comus, 530, quoted by Nares. 

CROGGY, weak in the fore legs ; applied to a horse. 

CRONE, a toothless ewe ; an old woman. 

CROOD, a crowd ; to crowd. ** The hoose is croodcd oot.*' 

CROOK. See Cruck. 

CROON, crown. "He cam doon on the croon o* his heed." 
** Len's a half a croon.'' 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 201 

CROON, to bellow, to roar. Also to murmur softly. Croonin, 
the present participle, is applied to the roaring of a spoiled 
child, and to the continuous bellow of a beast in distress. 

" A crooHt'n cow, a crawin hen, 
A whistling maid, fu' weel ye ken, 
Are deemed aye unlucky." 

L. Proudlock, song, Cuddu and his Crawin* Hen, 

CROONER, coroner. " The croofur's comin i* the morn aboot 
the bairn they fund i' the burn." 

CROOPY, hoarse. . 

" When Hamlick stuck his daddle oot. 
To grip his feyther's paw, man, 
He gav a kind o' croopy shoot. 
To find the caud sty en wa', man." 

J. P. Robson. d. 1870, Hamlick, Prince 0' Denton. 

CROOSE, GROUSE, brisk, lively, eager. Crackin-croosey is, as 
we should say, '^ in great form,*' confident, talking big. 

*'Crowse: brisk, budge, lively, jolly. *As crowse as a new washen 
louse.' " — Ray*s Gloss. 

" A cock's aye croose on his aan midden." — Newcastle proverb. 

"An' croose we left oor canny toon 
I' Jimmy Joneson's whurry." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Jemmy Joneson's Wherry. 

•• Wor low-rope let, afield we set, 
The trappin trade quite crouse te lairn." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. 18. 

"It's ha' ye seen how crouse and gay 
The lads and lasses bent their way." 

" Theatre in an Uproar.** 

Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 183. 

" Gorcocks beck around Aid Crag 
Sae crousely and sae proud." 

James Armstrong, Wanny Blossoms, 1879, p. 4. 

CROOT, CRUT, to sprout, to grow. "The bairns crooted oot 
like young trees, man." (J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Bob Stacker's 
Secret,) To recover. ** She's been varry bad, poor body, but 
she'll syun croot oot agyen." 

CROP, the head or neck. ** A rope they fastened round maw 
crop." (J. P. Robson, Malley's Voyage, 1849.) To cut the 
hair. " What a crop he's gien ye !" 

CROP, or CRAA, the basset, or outburst to the surface, of a 
seam of coal or other stratum. This localism has passed into 
a scientific term in the form of outcrop, as applied to a stratum. 
See under word Day. 



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202 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CROP, to leave a portion of coal at the bottom of a seam 
in working. Also to ** set out *' a tub or corf of coals filled 
insufficiently, and consequently forfeited. — GrunwelL 

CROPPEN, crept : the p.p. of crup. The verb occurs in the 
dialect with a strong past tense which has the variant forms 
of crap^ and crup, and cvop. The past participle has also the 
variants croppen and cruppen, **We'd just croppen into bed 
agyen.'' ** We fund the beggar hed cruppen oot o* his hole." 
** He's get ten sair croppen togither " — bent with age. 

CROPPIN, the crop of a bird. "To set up the croppin'* is 
to give oneself an absurd air of importance, or to walk with a 
strutting consequential gait. 

" The clerk he soon set up his croppins^** 

Thomas Whittle, •• The Midford Galloways Rambled 
BelVs Rhymes, 1812, p. 175. 

CROSIL, to char small or dust coal in the fire so as to make 
cinders. A blacksmith crosils his fire by blowing slowly till 
the duif coal has become caked in small cinders, which he 
can use to get up a proper heat when he puts in his work. 

CROSS, across. ** 'Cross the floor " is used for across the floor. 
** He cam 'cross ower to meet me.'* 

" In the Side once the houses so nearly did meet, 
That folk could so friendly shake hands 'cross the street." 

R. Gilchrist, 1835, Song of Improvements. 

CROSSCUT, a passage driven at an angle with the fibres of 
the coal : ** in any direction between headways course and 
broadways course." — GreenwelL 

CROSSING, an arch by which a current of air is carried 
across overhead in a pit. 

CROSS-THE-BUCKLE, to cross the arms in playing at 
&kipping-rope, or the legs in dancing. 
" Can ye jump up and shuffle. 
And cross owtr the buckle 
When ye dance like the cliver Bob Cranky." 

J. Selkirk, d. 1843, ''Bob Cranky's "Size Sunday." 
A llanos Collection, p. 218. 

CROTLY, CRUTLY, friable, crumby. When the land is in 
fine condition and crumbles as the plough turns over the 
furrow it is said to be crotly. Crotly-hooiedy in a horse or 
beast, is when the hoof crumbles. A crotl)^ temper is a quick 
temper. ** The aad maister hes a temper as crutly as ewe- 
milk cheese.'* 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 203 

GROUSE, CROOSE, brisk, lively. See Croose. 

CROW. See Craa, &c. 

CROWBERRY, the berry-bearing heath, Empetrum nigrum. 
See Craacrook. 

CROW COAL, a seam of coal worked from a crow, or outcrop. 
See Craa, 5. 

*' The crow coal about a foot or less thick." 

The Compleat CollUr^ 1708. 

CROWDY, a Northumberland dish, made by filling a basin 
with oatmeal, and then pouring in boiling water. A vigorous 
stirring is required whilst the water is being poured ; and, 
when the two ingredients are thoroughly mixed, the "hasty 
pudding" is ready. It is served with a little butter, dripping, 
or other flavouring, according to taste, or it is taken with 
milk. Crowdy is purely local, as applied to scalded oatmeal ; 
for what is called crowdy in Northumberland is in parts of 
Scotland **brose." In the island of Skye crowdy is applied 
to a peculiar cheese, which is made rich by the addition of 
butter, and eaten soft, like cream cheese. 
•* The crowdy is wor daily dish." 

T. "Wilson, Pitman's Pay^ pt. i., v. 56. 

CROWDY-MAIN, an uproarious crowd, a cock fight. The 
dalesmen of Rede and Coquet were accustomed to meet at 
Harehaugh " for the purpose of fighting their cocks, and of 
having afterwards a sort of friendly crowdy-main among them- 
selves." — S. Oliver the Younger, Rambles in Northumberland. 
'* Whei, whei, thinks aw, this caps the stack ; 
It was a crowdy-main man." 

J. P. Robson, Molly's Voyage^ 1849. 

CROW-FISH, the spiney crab. [Holy Island.] 

CROW-GARLIC, the Allium vineale, L., found in grassy places 
and somewhat rare. In Northumberland it grows at Belford 
and Gunnerton. 

CROWLEY'S CREW, the men formerly employed by Crowley 
and Co. in the historic ironworks at Winlaton, Swalwell, and 
Winlaton Mill. In comparison with other craftsmen it was 
asked : — 

*' Can they de ouse wi' Crowley's Crew, 
Frev a needle tiv a anchor. O 1*' 
Such, indeed, was the variety of manufactures produced by 
these smiths, that the boast was scarcely an empty figure of 
speech. 



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204 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CROWN, a term for the top part of anything. The crown in a 
pit is the highest level in it. 

CROWN TREE, the top balk used in supporting the roof in a 
coal pit ; it is the cross piece laid over two vertical props. 
See Gallows-timber. 

CRUCK, to crook, to bend. 

CRUCK, a crook, a hook, the hinge of a gate. See Crank. 

" One pair of rroAs."— R. Welford, Hist, of Newcastle XVI. Cent., p. 389. 

'* Item p^ to John Marley for a new pann and a crouke to the Beacoa, 
i8s/' — Gateshead Church Books, 1645. 

CRUCK, a disease causing a twisted neck in sheep. 

CRUCK- YOR- ELBOW, write it down, put your name to it. 

CRUCK- YOR-HOUGH, that is. bend your hough (the hough is 
the back part of the knee) ; sit down. ** Crook your hough I " — 
the friendly salutation of a pitman who wants you to sit down 
and *' have a crack.'* It means either to sit on a seat or on 
your hunkers; originally, in all probability, the latter. — 
GreenwelL 

" Wi, lad ! what's set te here se lyet ? 
Draw in a seat, an' crook thy hoff." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay^ 1829, pt. iii., v. 25. 

" Wiv hus i' th' north, when aw'm wairsh i' my way, 
(But te knaw wor warm hearts, ye yurseli come) 
Aw lift the first latch, and baith man and dame say. 
Cruck your hough, canny man, for ye're welcome.'* 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Canny NewcasiU, 

CRUCK- YOR-THUMB, the instruction given as a charm 
against witchcraft. 

" The fists are clenched, but the thumbs are doubled up inside the 
palms. The reason for this peculiarity may, no doubt, be found in an 
old Northumbrian superstition." "Children," says Hutchinson, "to 
avoid approaching danger, are taught to double the thumb within the 
hand. This was much practised while the terrors of witchcraft 
remained.*' — W. W. Tomlinson. Guide to Northumberland^ 1888, p. 64. 

CRUD, CRUDDLE, to curdle. 

CRUDDLE, to crouch closely together. "They wor flaid o' 
the thunnor and cruddled in.*' 

*' The barefooted younkers sit crvddleing on a heap round a fire.**— 
Collier, Essay on Charters, particularly those of Newcastle, 1777, p. 81. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 205 

CRUDS, curds. "The cruds and cream hoose'* was formerly 
an institution in Newcastle. 

" Off the ghost ilew wiv a terrible scream : 
They ran into a hoose where they sell cruds an' cream.** 

R. Emery, d. 1871, Curds and Cream House Ghost. 

CRUIVE, a fish trap made by enclosing a space in a river. 
See Creeve. Compare Cree, i. 

*' The ' fish garth ' is called a cruive. It is made of wood, and has trafs^ 
&c., into which the fish on ascending the river enter, and from which 
they cannot escape."— R. Weddell, Salmon Fishing in River Tweed.— 
Archaologia Mliana, 4to, vol. iv., p. 305. 

CRULL, to work with worsted. — Brockett, ** Len us yor stottin 
baal and aa*ll crulPd for ye** — that is, cover it with worsted in 
colours. A crulled'hsLail was a child's ball made of a ravelled- 
out old stocking having its surface worked with crewel. 

CRULLS, threads of coloured worsted. Compare Creevel. 

CRUM EL, to crumble. Words in modern English with a b 
before e, or U, all drop the b in the dialect : thus tumble, 
tumel ; rumble, rumel ; fumble, fumel ; nimble, nitnel ; thimble, 
tkimel ; humble, hutnel ; slumber, slumer ; timber, tiTner, &c. 

CRUMEL, a crumb. ** Dinna drop yor crumels on the floor.'* 

CRUMMY, a favourite name for a cow with crooked horns. — 
Bfocheti, 

CRUMMY, plump, in good condition ; applied to edibles. 

CRUMP, the cramp ; out of temper. — Grose's Gloss. 

CRUN, to whine. See Croon. 

CRUNGE, to cringe. 

CRUNKLE, to rumple, to make a noise as in crumpling 
paper. 

CRUNTLE, the front part of a pig*s head above the eyes. 
Also applied to the human head familiarly. " Aa'U gie ye a 
crack ower the cruntU ye noo.** 

CRUP and CRUPPEN (variants of crap and croppen), crept. 
" He's sair cruppen doon.'* 



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206 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CRUPPER-STONE, CRUPPLE-STONE, a stepped stone, 
or series of steps placed near the door outside a house, and 
formerly used for mounting on horseback, or for the women 
who mounted on the pillion. See also Horse-stone, Horsin- 
STONE, Mount, and Pillion-styen. 

CRUPPY-DOW, a cake made of oatmeal and fish, much 
esteemed in Northumberland. 

" Dunstan-steads for loggerheads. 
And Craster for crowdies, 
Spital-ford for crufpy-dotvs. 
And Embleton for howdies." 

Old Saying, taken down from the recitation 
of Mrs. Aynsley, of Embleton, 1891. 

CRUSH, a great quantity, a crush of wet, a crush of corn. — 
Brockett, 3rd ed. 

CRUSH, the fracture of coal pillars in a pit by the weight of 
the superincumbent strata. 

CRUT, a dwarf, anything curbed in its growth. — Brockett, 

CRUTLY, friable, easily crumbed. See Crotly. 

*' The cheese you send must not be a cruttley one. as they are so bad 
for cutting into slices." — Letter ^ March, 1888. 

CRUTTLE, a crumb. 

•• To curdle ''— Northumberland.— HalliwelVs Diet. 

CRY-COOK, to give in, to capitulate to an argument or 
accusation. See Cook. 

CRYIN'-OOT, the time of accouchement. It was made a 
special occasion for the assemblage of neighbours and gossips, 
when "booted-breed" and **groaning-cheese" were served up. 
*• De ye hear *or shootin* ? The deal's revenge. Thor*!! be 
one mair o' them afore the mornin'.** A proverbial saying on 
this occasion. 

CUBE, or CUPOLA, a shaft sunk near to the top of a furnace 
upcast, and holed into the shaft a few fathoms below the 
surface, with a wide chimney erected over it, rising thirty or 
forty feet above the surface. It relieves the pit top from 
smoke. Called also a tube. — GreenwelL 

CUCKLE-HEED, a stupid person. See Chuckle-heed. 

•• The procession was headed by Barbara Bell, 
He was followed by cuckle-heed Chancellor Kell. 

T. Marshall, d. 1869, Euphy's Coronation. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 207 

CUCKOO. See Gowk and following words. 

CUCKOO-FLOWER, the meadow bitterness, Cardamine 
pratensis. Called also pinksy spinks^ bog-spinks, May-flower, and 
lady-stfiock, 

CUCKOO-GRASS, the field woodrush, Lnzula campestris. 
Called also pas-weep grass and black-caps. 

CUCKOO-MORNIN', **a holiday on hearing the cuckoo for 
the first time.*' — Gloss, to Pitman's Pay. (Obs.) 

" A cuckoo^momifC give a lad, 
He values not his plagues a cherry." 

T. Wilson, Pitman^ s Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 64 

CUCKOO'S-MAIDEN, the wryneck— yttw^r torquUla^^hioh 
usually arrives here a few days before the cuckoo, and 
migrates in September. — Brockett. 

" It is far from common in Northumberland, but is more frequently 
seen in Durham." — ^John Hancock, Birds of Northumberland and Durham, 

CUCKOO'S-MEAT, GOWK'S-MEAT, or GOWK'S- 
CLOVER, the sorrel, Oxalis acetosella. 

CUCKOO'S-SPIT, the white froth which encloses the larva of 
the Cicada spumaris. 

CUCKOO'S TILLIN, the meadow pipit, Anthus pratensis. 
See Titlark. 

CUDBERD, Cuthbert. See Cuddy and Culbert. 

CUD-BUSH, an esculent plant. (? Cud-weed.) 

'* 1666. December 8. — Forster to Williamson [about a tumult in 
Sandgate, Newcastle, during collection of hearth-money] . • They said 
they were willing [to pay] but had not bread to eat. Indeed, hundreds 
of them for weeks have lived only on oatmeal, water, and cudbush boiled 
together.' "—Calendar of State Papers. Domestic Series, 1666. 

CUDDY, a donkey, a stupid person. ** What are ye deein 
that for, ye great ciiddy ?" A half-wit. ** Cuddy Willy." 

" To let the folks see thou's a leydy, 
On a cuddy thou's ride to the toon." 

W. Midford, Pitman's Courtship, 1818. 

" For on the new line an awd cuddy, wiv ease, 
Will draw the mail coach, or even a waggon." 

T. Wilson, Stanzas on a Line of Intended Road, 1825, 



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208 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CUDDY, the common abbreviation of Cuthbert. The name of 
the saint is a very popular Christian name in Northern parts. 
The forms Cudberi and Culbert are still heard on the lips of old 
people. See Culbert. 

CUDDY- AN *-CREELS, a donkey with panniers. 

CUDDY*S-LEGS, herrings. Fishwives used to call herrings 
thus : " There's yor cuddy^s-legs an* lady's thighs." 

CUDDY'S-LUGS, the great mullein, Verbascum ihapsus. 

CUFF, a simpleton. — Brockett^ 3rd ed. See Cuif. 

CUFF-CUFF, the call for a pigeon. 

CUICK (pron. ke-yuk^ ^^), to cook. See Ceyuk. 

'* Of a' the kinds of hollow meats 
That greasy cuicks se oft are speeten.** 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v. 26. 

CUIF, a lout, an awkward fellow. 

CUIFF, to walk in an awkward manner; especially with large 
broad feet. — Brockett. 

CUIL, KEYUL, to cool. See Keel. 

CU KEN WORT, chickweed. See Cluckweed. 

CULBARD, a cuUish, or stupid person. 

CULBERT, or CUDBERT, Cuthbert. Also the eider duck, 
Somateria mollissima^ which is familiar in Northumberland and 
at the Fame Islands as the Culbert^ Cudberty or Cudbert's duck. 

" For centuries they have been known as St. Cuthbert's ducks. He 
lavished upon them special marks of kindness and affection. They were 
frequently his sole companions during the long hours of his solitary 
nights, clustering round him when he watched and prayed on the rocks 
which surround^ his home. They obeyed his every word, and became 
so tame and familiar with him that they would allow him to approach 
them at all times without fear, and caress them with his hand." — The 
Rev. Provost Consitt, Life of St. Cuthbert, p. 82. 

CULBERT, a variant of culvert. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 209 

CULL, a cheat, a devil — Northumhrland, — HalliwelVs Lief. 

CULL, a fond, stupid, simple fellow. "C«// Willy" was the 
name of a Newcastle half-wit of former days. 

'• Had yor tongue, ye cull,** 

Song, Billy Oliver. 

" Cull cheps for bis worm-cakes frae far an' near ride — 
Poor pitmen, an' farmers, an' keelmen, an' flonkies.** 

R. Emery, d. 1871, ** Pitman's Ramble." 

Bards of the Tyne, p. 70. 

CULLISH, raw, clownish, stupid ; this and the adverbial form 
cullishly — from cull^ above. 

" To laugh at a prophet she tbowt it was cullish.'* 

R. Emery, d. 1871, '' Mally and the Prophet." 

Bards 0/ the Tyne, p. 254. 

*' Declared in her breest greet consam it inspired 
That my Lord should se cullishly come by his deeth." 

John Shield, My Lord 'Size. 

CULLS, animals that are rejected from a herd of cattle, or 
flock of sheep. 

CUMBER, trouble, oppression. — Brocketty 3rd ed. (Obs.) 

•• A care, danger, or inconvenience." — Nares* Gloss. 

The outlaws of Liddesdale " kept him a great while in cumber." — Care)'^ 
Earl 0/ Monmouth,— Hodgson, iii., 2., p. 120, note. 

•* Fleet foot on the correi 
Sage counsel in cumber, 
Red hand in the foray, 
How sound is thy slumber." 

Lady of the Lake, cant, iii., 16. 

CUM'D, or CUMMEN, p.p. of come. *• If ye'd ony cumd 
seunor, noo." " He'd cummen in afore aa gat there mesel." 

CUMMINS, the sprouts from barley when in process of malting. 
They form a fine granular powder, and are sold by maltsters 
for cattle feeding purposes. Cummins is also applied to the 
mixture made from the dust adhering to the dried oat husks 
and water. Hence the saying ** Thick as cummins ^'^ applied 
to muddy water. 



CUN, or CON, to learn, to know. — Brochdt. 

N 



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2IO NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CUNDY, a drain, a sewer, a conduit. " A TVimmeMn* cundy " is 
a drain with loose, broken stone laid round to allow of 
percolation from the surface. *' A cundied corf" was a corf 
packed hollow to give an appearance of a greater bulk to 
the coals in it. When coals were paid by measure instead of 
by weight, this was a point for the keeker's observation. 

" Paide for a lb. of pepper, and a bagg, for the rente of the cunditt 
without Westgate to Mr. Thomas Hilton, due at Micklemas last, 45/'— 
Newcastle Muncipal Accounts, 1593. 

" Aw'l inspect ivery cundv an' midden." 

J. P. Robson, Collier's Farewell. 

CUNNIN-CYEK, a cake of ordinary appearance outwardly, 
but when cut revealing hidden fruit, currants, &c., in the centre. 

CUPOLA. See Cube. 

CUR (pron. cor), a cowardly man. ** Hit one yor size, ye greet 
cur, ye." 

*• A currish worthless person." — HalliwelVs Diet. 
" A ketty cur^*^ a very vile person. — Brockett. 

CURCHOR, a kerchief, as hanVwfc/jof, Ti^c^xurchor — a handker- 
chief, neck-kerchief. The common sound of the word is 
koYshor — thus, hdjikorshor, neckorskor. 

" Paide for a curchor and a rale to wind her, 2s." at the burial of a 
woman. — Newcastle Municipal Accounts^ Auguste, 1593. 

CURFEW-BELL, the evening bell, which was generally rung 
at eight o'clock for the object of having all fires and lights 
extinguished, a requisite precaution in olden times. The 
name and use is still retained at Newcastle. — HalliwelVs Diet., 
1846. See Brand's Observations on Bourne's Antiquities, chap. i. 

CURRENBERRIES, red currants, Rihes rubrum. See Corn- 

BARRIES. 

CURTAIN, the fold yard in the farm steading. The survival 
of this word is a most interesting relic of the times when every 
Northumberland fold yard was a fortified enclosure. In 
fortification a cortin or courtine is the wall or distance between 
the flanks of two bastions. The local pronounciation is still 
cortin. See Cortain. 

CUS, CUST, CUSSEN (see Cassen), cast, applied to 
anything thrown aside. •* He cast-oot " means he quarrelled. 
See Cast-out. 

CUSHAT, the ring dove. Columba palumbus. Called also, but 
rarely, cushy doo. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 211 

CUSHION-DANCE, a country dance in which one person 
held a cushion whilst the rest of the company danced in a 
ring, singing :— 

" The best bed. the feather bed. 
The best bed ov a', 
The best bqd i' wor hoose 
Is clean pea straw." 

At the end of the chant the cushion was laid at the feet of a 
favoured person and knelt on. The person thus saluted 
kissed the kneeling suppliant and then took up the cushion in 
turn and danced round with it as the first had done; all 
singing again and again the refrain. ** That dance of dances, 
the cushion-dance," 

CUSHY-COO, a pet name for a cow. Cushy-cows, docken seed, 
the seed of broad-leaved dock, Rumex obtusifolius. 

CUSHY-COO-LADY, the lady-bird beetle. 

CUSSEN (p,p, of cast). ** Cussen in a mould " — cast in a mould. 
" Cussen down '* — cast down. 

CUSSEN, warped. "Them dyels is aa cussen" — those deals 
are all warped. 

CUT, an excavation through a hill. '* The New Cntr " The 
Cut Bank." 

CUT, a measure of yarn — one-twelfth of a hank. 

CUT, a number of sheep on a large grazing farm. A " hirsel '* 
is divided into several divisions called cuts, each keeping to 
its own range of pasture. 

CUT, to run quickly. " Cut an' run,'* **C«^ away noo, as fast 
as ye can," ** Cut yor stick," **Cut yor lucky," are commands 
to leave instantly. ** To cut'* is to move in a step dance. 
" In the dance se sprightly, 
He'll cut rod shuffle lightly." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, New Keel Row. 

CUT, or CUTS. ''To stand your cuts*'— to maintain your 
position, to hold your own. 

CUT. ** The last cut," Before the introduction of the reaping 
machine, at the finish of the "white com " harvest it was the 
custom for the young unmarried women to endeavour to get 
"the last cut" thereby hoping to be the first to get nxarried. 
The same practice prevails in Tiviotdale. See " hinmost cut " 
in Jamieson. 



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212 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CUT A PURSE, the method of ascertaining the amount of 
fine to be imposed for an offence against the rules of the 
river Tyne. (Obs.) 

"Paide for two purses of lether which should have bene cutt in the 
Towne Chamber and was not, by a Frenchman, 8d." — NewcaUU 
Municipal Accounts, AugusU, 1593. 

" It was a custom in Newcastle, as stated by Bourne, that a master of 
a ship who threw ballast into too shallow water at sea, if convicted, must 
pay a fine of £5 ; which was put into a purse, and the offender was 
required to cut the purse, by way of acknowledgment that he was no 
better than those *cut purses' who ripped a man's money firom his 
girdle. Gardiner says the offender was to pay a fine of five pounds, or 
else to cut the purse which hangs up in the tovm-chamber with sand and 
money in it, and so much as is therein he must pay, or is sent to prison, 
and there to lye till he doth pay it. "—Richard Welford, Hist, of Newcastle, 
vol. iii., under date 1593, p. 82. 

" The • cut-parse ' points te bygyen times, 
When truth was niver sowt in wells, 
When justice punished captains' crimes, 
Without the fash o* weights an* skyells.'* 

T. Wilson, Glance at Polly-Technic, 1840. 

CUTBEARD, cudbear. A lichen that gives a purple dye. 
The Lecanora tartarea, growing commonly on limestone 
rocks. — Ogilvie, 

CUTES (pron. kyuts)^ the feet, used derisively. 

" Did ivver mortals see sic brutes, 
Te order me to lift ma cutes.** 

Geo. Cameron, song, The Pitman's Revenge, 1804. 

CUTE-SKINS, CUTE-KINS, additional coverings for the 
legs during snowy weather, generally worsted stockings with 
the feet cut oflf; a sort of long gaiters. — Brockctt. See 

KiTICANS. 

CUTHBERT'S BEADS, portions of the jointed stems of fossil 
encrinites common in the mountain limestone. They are 
found at Lindisfarne plentifully, and there, legend says : — 

" Saint Cuthbert sits, and toils to frame 
The sea-bom beads that bear his name." 

" While at this task he is supposed to sit during the night upon a 
certain rock and use another as his anvil." — Note to Marmion. 

CUTHBERT'S DOWN, the down of the eider duck. See 
St. Cuthbert's Ducks and Culbert. 

*< In the list of articles belonging to the Feretory at Durham in 141 7 
are two pairs of cushions, of which one is of CuthberVs doxtm (Eyre).** — 
Rev. Prov. Consitt, Life of St. Cuthbert, 1887, p. 82, note. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 213 

CUTHBERT STONES; two mete or bounder stones which 
were let into the Old Tyne Bridge between Newcastle and 
Gateshead to mark the limit of the ancient boundary of the 
patrimony of St. Cuthbert, which extended from Gateshead 
along one-third of the length of the bridge. The bounder 
stone was afterwards known as '* the blue stone,'' now preserved 
in the Old Castle at Newcastle. 

CUTS, lots. " To draw cuts,'' to determine by lots. This is 
generally by straws cut into unequal lengths. The pilgrims 
m the Canterbury Tales " drew cuts " who should begin their 
tale. The lot fell on the Knight. 

CUTTEN, p.p. of cut. "It waddent cutien"— it would not 
have cut. 

•' 'Twas cutten up wi' heuks."— G. Chatt, Old Farmer, 1866. 

CUTTER, to fondle, to make love to. 

" Aw swagger 'd then ; for ma new suit 
Play'd harlekin amang the lasses." 

" Amang them aw wad always be, 
Aw cuttered, canny things, about 'em." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 5-6. 

Cutierin is hence the sacred, affectionate talk of lovers, and 
the cooing of the pigeon. 

CUT-THROAT, the white-throat, Curruca cinerea. See Jenny- 
cut-throat. 

CUTTY, short. ** He hes on his cutty coat." 

CUTTY, a short pipe. Cutty-gun, a familiar term for a short 
pipe. — Brockett. Compare Kotty. 

Aug. II, 1570. Will of Allan Dixon, of Newcastle, ropemaker : — "To 
John Hall, one cloak and one coot pipe'* — Richard Welford., Hist, of 
Newcastle XVI. Cent., p. 439. 

" She frae ma mouth the cuttie pous. 
When sleep owercomes ma weary clay." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1S26, pt. i., v. 79. 

CUTTY, a kmie.— Brockett. A short spoon. 

CUTTY-SOAMS, the name given to a malicious boggle who 
mysteriously haunted a pit in the neighbourhood of Calling- 
ton and cut the pitmen's soafns, or hauling ropes. See 
Monthly Chronicle, vol. i., p. 269. 

CUTWILLEY, a loop of iron, on each end and in the middle 
of a swingle tree, to which hooks and chains are attached. 



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214 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

CWOAT ^[T.] , coat. 

CYEK, or KYEK, cake- 

" The bride-kyek neist, byeth sweet and short, 
Was toss'd in platefuls ower the bride." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 83. 

CYEK-TOASTER, a rack made in the form of the letter A, 
used to brown a cake before the fire. See Beaksticks. 



D is sometimes intrusive, especially among children in 
Northumberland, and the phrase **Gi* me-i-it," for give it 
me, is heard. *• We ron by-i-it," for we ran by it. D is 
a frequent abbreviation of it at the end of a word. ForW» 
for it ; wiW, with it ; deun'^?, done it ; thraan'i, thrown it ; 
blaanW, blown it; "Stan' byW," stand by it. ** He wis oot 
i'rf," he was out in it. •* Runnin intiW," running into it. 
** Gan an by'i," go and buy it. ** They'll nivvor diW agyen,*' 
do it again. ** Did he deeW ?'* — did he do ic ? 

DAABER, DAUBER, a plasterer. (Obs.) The Rev. John 
Hodgson, in his MS. Dictionary, points out the passage : — 

"One built up a wall, and, lo. others daubed it with untempered 
mortar." — Ezekiel^ xiii., v. 10, and following verses. 

" The fraternity of bricklayers in Newcastle were anciently styled 
catUrs and daubers. The cat was a piece of soft clay moulded into the 
form of a mower's whetstone. This was thrust in t>etween the laths, 
which were afterwards daubed or plastered." — Brand, Hist, of Newcastle, 
vol. ij., p. 268, note. 

DAB, an adept. " He's a dab" or ** He's a ij6-hand at it." 

'* Sic a dab was aw when young at readin." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 103, 

DAB, a sharp blow. **A dab of clarts" is a piece of mud 
thrown and stuck on where it has fallen. 

" Aa myeks a dab at the bit imp."— Jfts Other Eye, 1880, p. 5. 
•• Starlings stun worms by a dab on the narrow end." — ^James Hardy, 
Hist, of Berwickshire Naturalists' Club, vol. vii., p. 295. 

DAB, to aim a blow. 

•• Small boys may be seen — prone on their stomachs—craning over the 
edge of the quay, and, with harpoons, ingeniously manufactured, 
generally out of steel prongerl forks, dabbing at the floating treasures." — 
R. J. Charlton, Neucjstle Town, 1885, p. 313. 

DABBER, a pointed retort. ** That's a dabber for him." A 
** hitchey dabber** is the piece of earthenware used in the game 
of **hitchey beds.'* 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 215 

DAB-CHICK, the little grebe. See Dob-chick. 

DAD, to strike with a heavy blow, but with something soft, as 
a pillow or a towel, &c. ** Aa41 dad yor jaa." ** He dadded his 
hide." Also to throw down heavily. ** Divvent dad it doon 
that way." 

DAD, a heavy blow. " He gat sic a dad as he'll not forget." 

'* He ga the noisy thing dads agyen the waal." 

James Horsley, Jim an* the Clocks 1883. 

DAD, a large piece. (Scarce.) 

*' An' lumps o' beef, an' dads o' duff, 
Was there for folks to dine." 

J. P. Robson, ** Pitman's Happy Times." 
Bards of the Tyne^ 1849, p. 77. 

DAD, to dash out a small fire of gas (in a pit), or a small 
accumulation of gas, with a jacket. — GreenwelL 

DADDIN, mixing firedamp in a pit with fresh air by duffing it 
with a jacket so as to dilute it and render it harmless. 

DADDLE, DAWDLE, to walk unsteadily, to waggle, to 
waddle. 

DADDLE, the hand. See also Meag, Pastie, Loop, Paw. 

" When Ham lick stuck his daddle oot, 
To grip his feyther's paw, man, 
He gav a kind o' croopy shoot 
To find the caud styen wa', man." 

J. P. Robson, Hamlick, Prince 0* Denton, pt. i. 
Bards of the Tyne, 1848, p. 129. 

DADGE, DODGE, to walk in a vacillating way. Dade is 
used elsewhere. 

" As uHxde is related to waddle t so is dade to daddle." — Wedgwood. 
DADGE, a large piece. See Dad. 

DAE, or DEYE-NETTLE, the hemp neitley Galeopsis Utrahit. 
It is often called the deed (dead) nettle, 

DAFF, to daunt.— /?a/s Gloss. (Obs.) 

" Claudio : Away, I will not have to do with you. 
Leonato : Can'st thou so daffe me ?" 

Much Ado About Nothings act v., so. i. 
Quoted in Nares* Gloss, 



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2l6 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DAFFIN [N.] , merrymaking. 

"You wou'd ha' burstne your heart wi' laughing 
To've seen the gang sae full o' dafing.** 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Disuiurse, 1686, p. 39. 

" Baffin wi' the hunter callants." 

Jas. Armstrong, Wanny Blossoms^ p. 20. 

DAFFLE, to be doting, to be forgetful. Persons growing old 
and in their dotage are said to dajffle. The word means to 
betray loss of memory and mental faculty. — Hodgson MS. 
MafiU is a similar expression for the above. 

DAFFLIN, fooling, merriment. Probably a variant of daffin. 
See Daffin. 

DAFT, silly. 

" Can the silly daft Carles think we'll still be fools?" 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686. 
" Thou'll drive me daft, aw often dreed." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1824, ed. 1872, p. 8. 

" Stupid, blockish, daunted ; from the word daff. Also. mad.~ 
Northumberland.*' — Ray's Gloss., MS. note. 

DAFTY, a silly person. " Ye'll hit somebody, ye daftyr 

DAFT-LIKE, fond or silly. " That was a dafUike trick, noo." 

DAG, to rain, to drizzle. " It*s daggin on." •* It's daggin 
weather." 

DAG, a pistol. (Obs.) 

"To Francis Liddell, his rapier; to Thomas Liddell, brother of 
Francis, his dagg," — Will of VVm. Anderson, Feb. i, 1568. — Richard 
Welford, Hist, of Newcastle and Gateshead XVI. Cent., p. 418. 

" My dag, with the case, and all things thereto belonging." — The same, 
P- 377- 

" The Maior of New-Castle with the Aldermen his Bretheren rid to 
visit on hors-back the colepits, as their office is to do every quartrer 
of yeer, where by the waye he was shot with a dag into the arme, which 
caused him to fall ofif his horse.'*— Doleful News from Edinburgh, 1641, 
quoted by Brockett. 

DAGGER-MONEY, a present made to the Judge of Assize as 
he left Newcastle by what is described in North's Life of the 
Lord Keeper Guilford as ** the liideous road along by the Tyne." 
** Before leaving," the biographer says, ** the Northumberland 
Sheriff gave us all arms ; that is, a dagger, knife, pen-knife, 
and fork, all together." The Mayor of Newcastle gave each 
judge a broad piece of gold. In 1561 this is mentioned as 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 217 

the •' reward of the judges, 30s.," and in 1566 as "two old 
ryalls for their fee, 30s.," also los. to ** the clerke of assis." 
In 1595 we find a payment for **2 old spurr riolls geven to 
the judges of the assizes, yeirlie accustomde 15s. 6d. per ; 
peece, 31s.," and, in 1659, the fee occurs under the form of 
**two rose nobles" of 42s. 6d. value. — G. B. Richardson, 
Note to Municipal Accounts y p. 1 19. The payment was continued 
until the route of the judges was altered a few years ago. 

DAGGY, DAGGLY, wet, drizzly. ** It's wdixry daggy thi' day." 
See Dag. 

DAINTIS, a delicacy, a dainty, a tit-bit ; a dish rarely cooked 
or served, but toothsome. " It's quite a daintis" (Scarce.) 

DAIRN, to darn. " Aa canna find me dairnin needle." 

DAIRNS, small, unmarketable hsh.—Brockett. (? Obs.) 

DAKER-HEN, or DEAKER-HEN, the corncrake or landrail. 

DAL ! sometimes OD-DAL ! modified damn. One may hear 
Northumbrians speak thus: ** Dal! aa*ll tell ye what!" 
" Od-dal ! what a pity ! " 

DALE, a valley, or vale. Tynedak, Allendale, Ridsdale, &c. 
Dale occurs thirteen times in Northumberland. — Place-names 
in Northumberland. — Archaologia ^liana, vol. ix., p. 61. 

DALE, a deal board. See Dyel, 2. 

DALL, to tire, as a horse with a long continuance of slow 
work. Applied also to people. ** It's a varry dallin job," a 
common expression. 

DAMP, gas ; the dampf of the Germans. The word is applied 
to the gases generated in a coal pit, as fire-damp, or black- 
damp (stythe), and Siiter-damp, or choke-damp. 

" The German damp/ is explained by Adelung, * any thick smoke, mist, 
or vapour, especially when it is of sulphureous nature.'" — Wedgwood's 
Diet. 

DAMSELS, the damson, or Damascene plum. (Obs.) 

•* Paide for daymselUs, Jib., 2s." — Newcastle Municipal Accounts, October, 
1598. 

DANDER, anger, passion. " His dander's gettin' up." 

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2l8 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DANDER, DAUNDER, to walk leisurely. 
" Aw tuik a luik aboot the toon, 
And efter danderin up an doon, 
To see what folks war deein." 

T. Wilson, Opening of Newcastle and Carlisle 
Railway, 1838. 
" He dandered alang." 

Geordy's Last, 1878, p. 9. 
We "far up Whyte Kielder did vfatmiffr."— J as. Armstrong, Wanmy 
Blossoms, 1879, P- 132- 

DANDER, the slaggy cinders from a smithy or foundry. 

DANDY, Andrew. 

DANDY, fine, gay; hence "the dandy ^'' the very thing. A 
fine carriage is called '* the dandy.'* 

" Hoo many men get thor heed tomed wi' dandy words." 

His Other Eye, 1880, p. 4. 
" March to the Dandy Fish Market." 

W. Midford, song, •• The Neu> Fish Market." 
Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 196. 
" Rosy wine, and nectar prime, 
For gods and men the dandy." 

T. Wilson, Carter's Well. 

Hence dandy-candy, gaily coloured or ornamental candy. 
Compare Candyman. Describing the old Tyne Bridge, Mr. 
J. P. Robson sings : — 

*• But, spite o* their ravish an* root, 
Blue-steyny is still to the fore, man ; 
The apple-wives on her still shout, 
Dandy candy's still sel'd in galore, man." 

J. P. Robson, '• The High Level Bridge.*' 
Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 429. 

DANDY-HORSE, the old velocipede, propelled by touching 
the ground with the feet ; now superseded by the "cycles." 

DANG {PJ. of ding), struck with violence. **Deevil, deevil, 
dang ye, aa wish God may hang ye," is shouted in chorus by 
children to the robber of a bird's nest. 

" Ane tuik him on the heid and dang out all his harnes" (brains). — 
Letter, 1565, Rowland Fester from Wark, in Charlton's North TynedaU, 
p. 69. 

*' At last a great thrust dang him ower, 
He lay aw his lang length o' the flags." 

Wm. Midford, song, The Mayor of Bordeaux, 1818. 
" She withered about, and dang down all the gear." 

Sawney Ogilby's Duel. 
*• "W'e shouted fome, and some dung down." 

J. Selkirk, Swaluell Hofping. 
" They dang wi' trees, and burst the door." 

The Ballad of Jamie Telfer. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 2I9 

DANG, an expletive. Compare Dal. 

DANGER BOARD, a board fixed in a mine to give notice, at 
a sufficient distance, of danger to be apprehended by the 
presence of noxious or inflammable gas. 

DANT, DENT, soft, inferior, sooty coal, found at backs, and 
at the leaders of hitches and troubles. — GreenwelL 

•• Dent, or sandstone shale."~Prof. Geikie, Hist, of Bwks. Nat. Club, 
vol. X., p. 147. 

Danty is applied to describe any stratum of this soft, sooty 
nature. ^^ Danty coal," ^^ Danty band." Danty coal is also 
called "foul coal." 

*• Black (fdit/y metal mixed with coal." — Borings and Sinkings, F.K., p. 42. 

•»Coal, black, danty, good for nothing." — The same, p. 51. 

** Danty stuff." — The same, p. 53. 

** Danty swad." — The same, L.R., p. 148. 

DAR, to dare to, to challenge. •* Come near me, if ye dar.'' 
" Aa'U dar ye de that agyen." ** Aa dard him ti the door," or 
" Aa dar'd him oot to fight." ** Aa dar say " is equivalent to 
** I dare say," or ** I suppose." See Dor. 

DARE, the dace, Cyprinus leuciseus, a. small river fish, rather 
less than a herring. Also called a skelly, 

DARG, DARGUE, DORG, a day's work. ** A day*s darg^ 
At Halton the tenantry are required to give one day's labour 
on the estate in the year for which no payment is made. 
This is called **the bond darg" P'ood is supplied, with 
beer, on the occasion. In ancient terriers dagg is used as an 
equivalent for a certain quantity of land. Probably as much 
as can be ploughed in one day's work ; or a day's work of 
mowing, as in the Elsdon terrier we have ** 9 dorgs of meadow 
lying east " and ** 4 dorgs in the Todholes Haugh." {Hodgson 
MS^ " 13 rigs being 4 dorg.'' (Hodgson's Northumberland^ 
pt. ij., vol. i., p. 92, note,) A darg is occasionally used to 
mean any set work. ** He went three darg'* — he went three 
journeys; not necessarily day's journeys. [S.] **A mow 
darg" is a day's mowing. ** A shear darg'^ is a day's reaping. 
(See examples under these words.) ''Each tenant is to 
perform yearly a mow dargue" (Hodgson's Northumberland^ 
vol. iii., pt. ii., p, 144, note p.) 

•Thou's often help'd te buss the tyup, 
And mun knaw a' the joy we fand ; 
When labour's yearly darg was up, 
An' lots o* gaudy days at hand." 

T. Wilson, Pitman s Pay, 2nd ed., pt. iii. 

Middleton H. Dand, Esq., of Acklington, writes: ** Darg, a 
day's work. A ploughman was formerly expected to plough 



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220 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

an acre per day : hence the name of a field at Amble Moor- 
house (my property) * the four and twenty dargy consisting 
of twenty-four acres." A not uncommon sarcasm is to say 
to a lazy fellow: * Ay, yeVe deun a darg^ aa's sure.'" "In 
mining, darg is a fixed quantity of coal to be worked for a 
certain price. This word is seldom heard in Newcastle 
mines, but it is the general term in use about Berwick. It is 
equivalent to the hewing or score price of the Newcastle 
collieries." (Greenwell.) 

DARK, blind ; ALMOST DARK, nearly blind ; QUITE 
DARK, stone blind. (Obs.) 

'* Pity a quite dark man." — Brockett. 

DARK, to eaves-drop ; to watch for an opportunity of injuring 
others for one's own benefit. — HalliweWs Diet. (Obs.) 

DARKIN, eaves-dropping. (Obs.) 

DARKNIN', twilight. "It ^/as darknin' afore we gat hyem." 
"He waaked back i' the darknin\'* 

DARN. " To the South end of Pitt Moore butts, then up to a 
Darn road to the March stone." (Bounder of Old Bewick in 
Hist, of Bwks. Nat, Clnh, vol. v., p. 256.) A "dark way" is 
mentioned in the previous paragraph. Darn and dark are 
thus probably synonymous for obscure, secret. The word is 
found in the street called Dam Crook in Newcastle, which 
was formerly a cul-de-saC, "A tenement or biurgage, vulgarly 
called the priest's chamber, as it lies and is situate in a certain 
vennel called Darm cruke." (Deed of 1525, in R. Welford's 
Hist, of Newcastle, ii., p. 87.) Derne means secret, and a ^^derne 
street" is a street where concealment or hiding may be had. 

"They loked est, they loked west, 
They might no man see. 
But as they loked in Barnysdale, 

By a derne strete 
Then came there a knight rydynge. 
Full sone they gan him mete." 

" Geste 0/ Robyn Hoder 

The Ballad Book, Allingham, p. no. 

To derne is to hide oneself, to skulk. Associated with this is 
dearnly, in which, from secretly, the meaning passes to lonely, 
and so to mournfully, and in this way Spenser uses it, when 
Alcyon, "breaking foorth at last, thus deamelie plained." 
(Spenser, Daphnaida, 1. 196.) And so also dernly is used as 
secretly. " The lady dernly called unto her to abstain." (Faery 
Queen, iii., xii., 34.) Derne in Old English was of course 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 221 

spoken as darn, as it is to this day in Northumberland, and no 
doubt the name of the street originates in this plain Old 
English word. A writer in Nature suggests the derivation of 
dam from Normandy and Brittany, where it means a piece, a 
portion, in the patois of those parts. (Jos. Lucas, Nature, 
vol. xxxvi. (1887), p. 339.) But the home origin of the word 
is more reasonable. "Crook" is suggested to be connected 
with the bends of the Lort Burn, which flowed through Darn 
Crook. The "crooks" of Forth are familiar, a "crook" 
meaning " a bend in the water." 

DARN IT, DARNUT, durst not. See Darrent, 

"Aw damit tell my brother." 

J. P. Robson, Lovesick Collier Lass^ 1848. 
" The cat's the pictur o' distress — 
The kitUens damut play, 
Poor Pincher niver shows his fyece, 
Upon this dreary day." 

T. Wilson, The Washing Day. 

DARRAK, a set-piece of work. See Darg. 

DAR-SAY! with a strong emphasis is "No, I wont!" See 
Dar. 

DARWENTWATTER, the pronunciation of name of the earl 
of that ilk. The tragic details of the history of James, Earl 
of Derwentwater, who was executed on 24th Feb., 1716, for 
participation in the wretched "rising" of the time are 
sufficiently familiar to every Northumbrian. On the fateful 
night the "Deel's watter" at Dilston ran blood. "The red 
streamers of the north are recorded to have been seen" (says 
Mr. Forster in his History of Corhridge, p. 160) " for the first 
time in this part of England, on the night of the fatal 24th 
Feb., 1716, and are designated, ' Lord Derwentwater' s 
lights.*" This is still the common name for the Aurora 
Borealis in the district. 

DASED, benumbed. See Daze. 

DASHING AIR, in mining, mixing air and gas together, until, 
by being completely incorporated, the mixture ceases to be 
inflammable. This is done by giving the air, after its first 
union with the fire-damp, a considerable length of run or 
course. — GreenwelL Compare Daddin. 

DAUD [N.] , to abuse. Compare Dad. 
" Baud, or gie him weel his souses, 
For ilk bad trick." 
Poems, by F. Donaldson, Glanton, 1809, p. 13. 



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222 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DAUR [N.] , to dare, to forbid. Constantly used in Northum- 
bedand. See Dor. 

DAVE, to assuage, to mitigate, to relieve. — Brockett^ 3rd ed. 
(Scarce.) 

DAVER, to stun with a blow, to stupefy. «* He hat him sic a 
yark alang the jaa 'at it daver't him." " A davered aad man " 
is a superannuated* or silly old man. 

•• Was thor ivver sec a davered fnil ?" 

Geordy's Last, 1878, p. 13. 

DAVER, a stunning blow. ** A daver, a devesher agyen the 
metal pump " (Misfortunes of Roger and his Wife). A daveskir 
is a blow that has stunned or felled. 

DAVY, DEAVY, the familiar name for Sir Humphrey Davy's 
safety lamp. 

DAVY-MAN ; the man who trims and repairs the Davy 
lamps. 

DAW, DOW, to thrive. (Obs.) 

" He neither dees nor daws," i.e., he neither dies nor mends." — Ray*s 
Gloss., 1 69 1. 

DAW, to dawn ; DAWIN, dawning. 

DAWB, to plaster. (Obs.) 

" Paid for spares, latts, nales and dawbing of a chimney in the Almes 
house, 8s. id."— Gateshead Church Books, 1631. 

DAWBER, a plasterer. An ordinary of the incorporated 
company of slaters of Newcastle, dated March i6th, 1677, 
separated them from the company of wallers, bricklayers, and 
dawberSf alias plasterers. — Mackenzie, Hist, of Newcastle^ p. 697. 
See Daaber. 

DAY, the surface of the ground, the top of a pit shaft, the 
" bank." A stratum is said at its outcrop to have " cropped 
out to the day.*' 

" Horses to draw your coals to bank (or day)." — The Compleat CoUter, 
1708, p. 32. 

" The corf is drawn up to the top (of the shaft), or to day, as it is their 
phrase." — The same. 

DAY-FA', a pitfall. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 2^3 

DAYHOLE, an adit or level working from the surface. Called 
also, day-drift and grove. 

DAY-SHIFT, when a concern is worked night and day, day 
men are called the day-shift, and night men night-shift • 

DAYS-MAN, an arbitrator; an umpire or judge. — Ray's Gloss. 
" An old word still in use among the farmers." — Brochett. 

DAY-STON ES, loose stones lying weathered upon the surface. — 
Hugh Miller, Geology of Otterburn and Elsdon, — Geological Survey 
Memoir y 1887. 

DAYTALE-MAN, a man employed by the day. 

"A labourer not engaged by a master for a certain time, but working 
for any person who will employ him by the day or by the week." — 
S. Oliver, the Younger, Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. 95, note. 

DAYTALIN, jobbing at odd day's works. 

DAY WATER, water which penetrates into the mine through 
some direct opening to the surface. — Mining Gloss. Newcastle 
Terms, 1852. 

DAZE, to stun. Dazed, stunned, stupefied. Dazed is applied 
also to ill-done bread or meat ; that is, when they have been 
too long at a slow fire and have in consequence lost flavour. 
The wood of a tree that has been allowed to lie too long with 
the bark on after it has been felled, and has been injured 
thereby, is termed "corky" or dazed. Hence dazed-like, 
benumbed-like, as from cold or fright ; and dazedness, 
numbness, as from cold or exhaustion. " AaVe a dazedness V 
that left airm." See Deased, Deasy, and Dozzened. 

*• A dazed look, such as a person has when frighted." — Ray's Gloss. 

" A dazed-egg is one in which the young has grown much, but is found 
to be dead at the time of hatching." — Hodgson MS. 

DE, do. Before a vowel de becomes div. " Hoo div aa knaa ?" 
** To de wor turn '* means having enough to live upon. See 
Dee. 

"Thou hes a witching way o' myekin me de what thou will." — Pitman's 
Pay, 1826, p. 13. 

•• We a' ways had te de wor turn 
And something for a time o* need." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. iii., v. 118. 

DEADS. See Deeds. 

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224 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DEAL, DALE, DOLE, to divide. •« Acre</a/<f-lands" are 
lands divided in acre strips. A dole of land is a piece of land 
dealt or doled out, an allotment or apportionment. See Dyel. 
"From thence as heaven water deals.'' — Description of a Boundary. — 
Hodgson's Northumberland^ pt. iii., 2, p. 24. 

DEALT-AN'-DEUN, served out and finished. 
" After a' was dealt an' duin." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 95. 

DEAN, a deep wooded valley. See Dene. 

DEAR KN AAS ! An exclamation equivalent to " I do not 
know," or " Nobody knows." ** Hes he been yit ?" •* Dear 
hnaas.^^ ^^ Dear knaas what aa's gan te dee?" "He's been 
dear knaas hoo lang away." "What the pollis wantit dear 
knaas," 

DEARN, lonely, solitary, far from neighbours. — Ray's Gloss. 
See Darn. (Obs.) 

DEAS, DEIS, a stone bench at the door of a cottage, some- 
times covered with sods. The deis was " the principal table 
in a hall, or the raised part of the floor on which it was 
placed. Also, the principal seat at this table. There were 
sometimes more than the one, the high deis being the principal 
deis in a royal hall.'* (Halliweirs Diet.) Mr. Wedgwood 
shows its derivation from French dais or daiz, a cloth of 
estate, canopy — old French dais, deisy a table, from discus. 
The name was then transferred to the raised step on which 
the high table was placed, or the canopy over it. In Raine*s 
History of North Durham^ in an inventory of goods in the 
Faren Islands in 1436, there is an entry of a ** Piece of 
blood-coloured tapestry for the desse" See Dess. 

DEASED, wanting the life principle, as a dried up plant, or 
wood that has lost its sap. When bread has been baked in 
a slow oven and not thoroughly " soaked," it is said to be deased. 
Wood beginning to rot is deased, A man in a deased condition 
is one utterly dispirited and depressed. See Daze and 

DOZZENED. 

DEASY, dull, spiritless, depressed. As applied to the weather, 
" a deasy day " is a dull, damp, cheerless day. 

DEAVE, to deafen, to stupefy with noise. 

*' Wi' thor hair reet on end, and thor blud like to freeze, 
Myest deaved wi' greet yells ; they dropped doon on thor knees." 

R. Emery, " Curds and Cream House Ghost,'" 
Allan*s Collection, p. 295. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 225 

DEAZIL, a deazil is a walk round by the sun. " Withershir s " 
is to go contrary to the sun's course. 

DEBATABLE LANDS, lands between the boundaries of 
England and Scotland where the demarcation of each 
kingdom had not been set out. These lands will be seen 
on maps down to recent times, and in A New Map of 
Nortkumberlaftd, by John Gary, 1828, they are called " disputed 
grounds." They had a bad name in former days. These 
territories are also called battable and threap-lands. 

" This degraded land gave rise to that celebrated joke upon King 
James's favourite Cow, which he brought from Scotland when he acceded 
to the crown. She, having no taste for English manners, silently 
retreated without even a farewell to the monarch, and was the only 
personage in his whole train that ever returned to Scotland. When the 
courtiers expressed their surprise how she could find the way, as she 
could speak neither Scotch nor English, the King replied, that did not 
excite his wonder so much as how she could travel over the debatable 
ground without being stolen." — Hist, of the Roman Wall, W. Hutton, 1802. 

DECK, the platform of a cage in a pit upon which the tubs 
stand . — Greenwell, 

DECLINE, DECLININ, consumption. " He's in a declining 

DEE, DE, to do-'p.t. deed ; p.p. deen (heard at Wooler) ; and 
deeuHj or deugkn. 

** He hes eneough to de to get it o' deughn." — Thos. Bewick, The Howdy ^ 
&c.y ed. 1850, p. II. 

" Three q' the bullies lap oot, 

An* left nyen but the little Pee Dee, 
He ran aboot stamping and crying, 
* How, smash ! skipper, what mun aw dee ?' " 
Song, ** Little Pee Dee:' 

Allan's Collection, p. 194. 

DEE, to die. 

" If thouil have me, faith I'll have thee. 
And love thee till the day I dee." 

Ed. Chicken, The Collier's Weddings 1735. 

Deeitty dying ; p.p. dee-en. " He'd dee-en afore ma time." 

" Deiand ai and never ded. "—Cwrsor Mundi. 

DEED, died. The p.t. and p.p. of du. 

" Paide for the chairge of buringe Dorathie Ogle, which deed in the 
Newiate," &c. — Newcastle Municipal Accounts, July, 1565. 

" Noo, Cuddy Willy's deed an* gyen, 
Aw's sure ye'U a' be sorry." 

J. G. Bagnall, Cuddy Willy's Deeth, 
O 



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226 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DEED, death. The use is common in such expressions as 
** Tewed to ietd;' ** Flaid to deed;' "Done to dud^' "Worked 
to detd;' " Dud thraw '*— death throe. 

** AUe manere of ioyes er in that stede, 
Thare es ay lyfe withouten iirfr.'* 

Hampole. d. 1349. Prickt ofComs^enct. 
Morris, line 7,813. 

DEED, stagnant. An unventilated place in a pit is said to be 
deed. 

DEED, indeed. " Deed, will aa not I "— •* Indeed, I will not ! " 
"Geud deed!'* occurs as an exclamation in a Joco-Smous 
Discourse, 1686, by G. Stuart. Deed is used so emphatically 
as to express more than a mere shortening of indeed. It 
is probably an abbreviation of *< geud dud.'' 

DEED-HOOSE, a mortuary house. 

DEED-KNOCK, a supposed warning of death, a mysterious 
noise. — HalliwelVs Diet. 

DEEDLY, deadly. 

He '* tried to shun the deidly blast." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v. 53. 

DEEDLY-FEADE, a blood feud. 

" If the (Tynedale or Redesdale) theaf be of any great surname or 
kyndred, and be lawfully executed by order of justice, the rest of his 
kynne or surname beare as much mallice, which they call deadly Jeads^ 
against such as foUowe the lawe against their cossen the theaf, as though 
he had unlawfully kylled hym witn a sword, and will by all means they 
can seeke revenge there uppon." — Sir Robert Bowes' s Report, 1551. 

** If any two be displeased, they expect no law, but bang it out bravely, 
one and his kindred against the other and his. This fighting they cadi 
their feides or deadly feides.'* — Gray, Chorographiay 1649. 

DEED-MAN, a dead man. It is remarkable that so many 
attributes of the dead are repeated in the local common 
names of plants. 

DEED-MAN'S BELLOWS, the red rattle, Pedictdaris palusttis. 
Also the creeping bugle, Ajuga reptans. 

DEED-MEN'S BELLS, the purple foxglowe, Digitalis purpurea. 

DEED-MAN'S BONES, the great starwort, SUllaria holostea. 

DEED-MEN'S FING-ERS, the marsh orchis, Orchis latifolia. 
Called also DeiTs foot, Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, and 
cock's kames. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 227 

DEED-MAN'S GRIEF, the Silene maritima. 

DEED-MAN'S HAND, the spotted orchis, Orchis maculaia. 
Known also as hen's hames and adder grass. 

DEED-MAN'S THUMB, the early orchis, Orchis mascula (or 
Aaron's beard). 

DEED-MAN'S OATMEAL, the seeds of hemlock, Conium 
maculatum. Called also bad-man's oatmeal, 

DEED-NIP, a blue mark on the body, ascribed to necromancy. — 
Brockett. (Obs.) 

DEED-PIG. A deed'pig signifies that it is all over with 
anything. ** Noo, noo, canny judge, play the reet caird, and 
it's a deed-pig " — said by a mayor of Newcastle when playing 
whist with Judge Bulier. 

DEEDS, DEADS, the small stones, spoil, or refuse from a 
quarry, or an excavation. Compare Red. 

" The heaps of deeds^ or earth du^ from the ditch of the murus*' — 
Hodgson's Northumberland t iii., 2, p. 282. 

" No. I Pit for the drawing of the deads from the Iron Mines." — 
Borings and Sinkings, A.B., p. 84. 

DEED-SMAAL, the finest coal dust. 

DEED-SWEERS, very lazy, very unwilling.— BwA^^, 3rd. ed. 

DEED-THRAA, death throe, the pangs of death. See Deed. 

" A man, when he first borne es, 
Bygynnes towarde the dede to drawe, 
And feles here many a dede thraw. 
Als sere yvels and angers when thai byfalle, 
That men may the dede thraws calls." 

Hampole, d. 1349, Pricke of Conscience, 
MorriSt line, 2097. 

DEEP, deaf. 

DEEP, barren, useless, decayed. A deef nut is a nut with an 
empty or decayed kernel. 

" Twou'd vex a man to th' very Guts, 
To sit seaven year cracking rffa/Nuts.'* 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686 p. 42. 

Deef earth, barren soil. Deef corn, blasted com. A deefpsip is 
the teat of a cow that does not render milk. 



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228 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DEEF-STENT, DEFE-STENT, a payment of money to a 
hind in lieu of cowgrass. Hinds were sometimes paid in 
kind by farm produce. In this was included the pasturag^e 
of a cow, but for the period in which the cow gave no milk, 
before the time of calving, a money equivalent was paid 
called the deef -stent. This was often as much as ^^3, and 
it was the only cash payment received for wages, except the 
" bondager*s " wage, which was generally lod. per day in 
harvest time. 

DEEFY, an empty thing, as a nut without a kernel — Whence a 
worthless thing with an outwardly good appearance. A deaf 
person. 

DEEP-SITTEN, eggs in which the young birds are almost 
ready to hatch out. " She hes fower eggs deep-sitten.'* 

DEER'S-HAIR, the tufted scirpus, orscaley stalked clubmoss, 
Scirpus caspitosus. 

DEER-STREET, DEOR-STREET, the name given to a 
Roman road at West Glanton. It is also the ancient name 
in the county of Durham. 

DEET, to set in order, to tidy, to clean. See Dight. 

DEETH-HE ARSE, death-hearse ; when the death-hiarse, drawn 
by headless horses, and driven by a headless driver, is seen 
about midnight proceeding rapidly, but without noise, towards 
the churchyard, the death of some considerable person in the 

. parish is sure to happen at no distant period.— S. Oliver, 
Rambles in Northumberland ^ 1835, p. 96. 

DEG, to drizzle. See Dag. 

DEHYIM, DEEYEM, a dame, a matron. See Deyem. 

DEIL, DEEL, DEEVIL, or DIVIL. This word plays an 
important part in the "strange oaths " formerly prevalent. 
It was used as an expression of impatience or contempt in 
manifold combination, such as '^ Dul tyek ye I" '* Deel smash 
ye ! " " Deel brust ye ! " " Deel stop oot thee een ! " And even 
m such remarkable invocations as " Dul fetch't ! " *• Dul 
scart yor nether part ! " " Deel rive ma sark ! " 

DEIL'S-DARNIN-NEEDLE, Venus's comb, or shepherd*s 
needle, Scandiz pecten- veneris. Called also witch's needle and 
Adam*s needle, 

'* I have recently heard it called elshins, i.e. awls ; and the deil*s 
*/5Afn."— James Hardy, Bwhs, Nat. Club, vol. vi., 1869-72, p. 159. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 229 

DEIL'S-FOOT, the marsh orchis, Orchis latifolia. Called also 
Cock's kameSy deed men's fingers^ Adam and Eve, and Cain and Abel. 

DEIL'S-LINGELS, knot-grass, Polygonum aviculare. Called 
also swine's grass, 

DELFS, small pits, which the country people czW delfs, no doubt 
from delving or digging. These places are invariably attended 
with a stratum of ironstone not far from the surface. — Rev. J. 
Hodgson, Archaologia /S liana, vol. i, p. 120. 

DELIVERY DRIFT, a drift from low ground into a pit shaft 
into which water is delivered from the pump. Called also 
off-take drift, — Greenwell. 

DELL, a little dale, or narrow valley. Still used in the North. — 
HalliwelVs Diet. 

DELVEN, delved, p.p. of delve. ** He might he' delven the side 
piece." 

DEM, to dam back wUter. 

DEMEAN, to lower oneself. " Aa waddent^w^aw mesel to de 
sic a thing." 

DEN, the place where the scythe is laid into the sned. To 
den is to fit a scythe to the sned or handle. " Git that scythe 
denn'd as sune as ivvor ye can." 

DEN, the point or place in boys' chase games from which they 
set out and on regaining cannot be taken. 

DENCH, DENCK, squeamish, dainty. (Rare.) 

DENE, DEAN, DEN, a valley through which a burn flows. 
The Lort burn, crossed by the High Bridge and the Low 
Bridge, flowed down what is now Dean Street in Newcastle. 
Pandon Dean was once a thing of beauty, as old pictures show. 
In ** a song published in September, 1776," on Pandon Dean, 
the poetess describes a distant view of 

" Antique walls which join the scene, 
And make more lovely Pandon Dean.*' 
" A dene is a wooded valley — a very narrow opening crowded with 
wood." — W. Morley Egglestone, Weardale Names, p. 57. 
• There are twenty -seven places with dean and twenty-three with den 
on the one inch ordnance map of Northumberland. — Archaologia 
/Eliana, vol. ix., p. 64. 

In the county of Durham appear twenty deans and twenty-two 
dens. — Place-Names, County Durham. — Archaologia jEliana, vol. x., p. 174 



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230 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DEPLOID, a cloak. (Obs.) 

•* To Launcelot Metcalfe, a diploid and 58. in silver."— Will of Wm. 
Bone, 1501.— Richard Welford, Hiit. of Newcastle in XVL Cent., p. 3. 

DEPPITY, DEPUTY. 

" The man who lays the plates and sets the timber for the hewers, 
and has charge of a district of the mine."— ilf inm^ Gloss. Newcastle Terms ^ 
1852. 

*' The deputies go to work an hour before the hewers. Their work 
consists of supporting the roof with props of wood, removing props from 
old workings, changing the air currents when necessary, and clearing 
away any sudden eruption of gas or fall of stone that might impede the 
work of the hewer.' — Dr. R. Wilson, Coal Miners of Darham and 
Northumberland. — Trans, of Tyneside Naturalists' Club, vol. vi., p. 203. 

" On descending to work, each hewer proceeds ' in by/ to a place 
appointed, to meet the diputf. The deputy examines each man*s lamp, 
and if found safe, returns it locked to the owner. Each man then 
finding from the deputy that his place is right, proceeds onwards to his 
kyevel." — The same, p. 204. 

** Aw gat, at furst, a shifter's place. 
And then a deputy was myed." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 99. 

DERN, dismal, dreary. See Darn. 

DESARVE, to deserve. 

DESS, DESSE, to lay close together, to desse wool, straw, &c. — 
Ray's Gloss., 1691. 

DESS, that portion of a haystack which is in process of being 
cut and used as required. "A dess of hay." In a round 
stack the centre, left after it had been dessed, was called a 
•* gowk." 

" Ling, dieSt hassocks, flaggs, straw, sedge, &c."— Harrison's England, 
1577. 

DESS, a step or raised place, a bench. See Deas. 

DEULL, DOLE, DOOL, grief, woe. 

" The sorow and dule that thai sal make.'* — Hampole, d. 1349. Pfickc of 
Conscience. 

DEULFOW, doleful. 

" What garr's the a deulfow fo'ke complain ?" — G. Stuart, Joco-Serious 
Discourse, 1686, p. 62. 

DEUMS, very, uncommonly. " Deums slaw," or " dry," or any 
other action that requires deutns to give it great effect, is very 
commonly used. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 23 1 

DEUN-OWER, overdone with exertion. 

" When wheit dyun ower the fiddlers went." 

J . Selkirk. Swalwell Hopping. 

*'Then Geordy did caper till myestly deun ower*' 

Song, NiwcastU Wonders. 

DEVALD, to cease. 

*' It's rained the byel day an' ne'er devalded.*' — Rothbury, 

DEVEL, to beat, to maul. " He's getten hissel sair devellcd" 
It is more applicable to a person who has come out injured in 
a mdee^ than to one who has been beaten in a personal 
encounter. 

DEVESHER, a heavy fall, a crash. This word occurs in the 
song of The Misfortunes of Roger and his Wife, The wife fell a 
devesher against the pump — ^that is, fell with a crashing blow. 

DEVIL'S CAUSEY, a branch from the Roman way— Watling 
Street — which goes off at Bewclayin a north-eastern direction, 
crossing the Tweed about a mile north of West Ord. It is 
also called Cobb^s causey. 

DEVIL'S GUTS, the creeping ranunculus, Ranunculus repens. 
Also the field convolvulus, Convolvulus arvensis, 

DEYEM, DYEM [T.], a dame, a matron. ''The aad dym 
sat aside the fire." 

DEY-NETTLE, the hedge sylvatica, Stachys sylvaiica. This is 
quite distinct from the doe-nettle, 

DEYUK, DYUK [T.], Duke. "The Dyuk & Newcastle." 
" The Deyuk o' Northumberland." 

DEYUK, DYUK [T.] , a duck. 

" Paide John Belman for carying a flale to avoyd dukes out of the 
street, 6d." — Newcastle Municipal Accounts, 1594. 

DEYUN, DEUN, or DYUN [T.J, done. DEYUN'D, done 
it. See Deun-ower. 

DHAEL, a funeral. (Obs.) Compare Deull. 

" They spak o' the great Swire's deeth — and the number oh fwoak that 
went to his dhael.** — Thomas Bewick, The Upgetting, ed. 1850, p. 13. 

" She spack a deal about the deeth of the swire and his dhael." " His 
muther grat mair at the dhael than ony body that was there."— TA# same, 
p. 14. 



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232 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DIALING, surveying.— W.E.Nicholson, Coo/ 7rfli^G/<>s$., 1888. 

DIBBOARD, the dip or inclination of a seam of coal. See 
Dipper. 

DICKY, the head. **Aa'll naap your dicky*'— 'Til thump 
your head." Dicky, a louse. 

DICKY. " It's aall dicky / " " Ifs aal dicky win him ! " means it 
is all over with a person, or he is completely ruined. ** Up to 
dick" on the other hand, means absolutely perfect, either in 
dress or in the performance of a thing. *^ He had on his 
Sunday claes, an' wis up to dick, aa can tell ye!" "The 
dinner was up to dick, noo ! " 

DICKY-BIRD, a small bird. The term is always applied 
endearingly. The Dicky-Bird Society, a society of young 
people, founded in connection with the Newcastle Weekly 
Chronicle, by Mr. W. E. Adams. The members are pledged 
to be kind to all living things, to protect them to the utmost 
of their power, to feed the birds in the winter time, and never 
take or destroy a nest. 

DFD, do it. " Aa wis a fyul to di^d." " Aa didn' dVd, did 
aa ? "— " I didn't do it, did I ? " 

DIDDER, to quiver with cold.— /?ay's Gloss. " To dodder," 
adds the Rev. J. Hodgson. See Dother. 
•' To shiver, to tremble."— Ha//ia/*/r5 Diet. 

DIDDER, a confused noise or bother. — Brockett, 3rd ed. 
(Scarce.) 

DIE-SAND. See Dye-sand. 

DIFFICULTER, the comparative of difficult— mote difficult. 
The quantity is laid on the second syllable in difficulty 
difficulties^ and difficulter, 

DIGHT, DEET, DITE, to make ready, to prepare. In early 
writers it is used as a past part, in the sense of prepared. 
Thus it is applied to a hard-boiled ^gg : ''an egg^ hdivAdiglU,'* 
(Hampole, d. 1349, Pricke of Conscience, — Morris, line 6,455.) 
And, m the same writer, **The kingdom that is prepared 
for you" is rendered ''The kyngdom that til yhow es dight.'' 
{The same, line 6,149.) In this poem it also means decked: 
and the righteous in heaven sit in glory ** rychely dight. 
(Line 8,532.) So, too, in Chaucer : — 

" £r it was day, as sche was wont to do, 
Sche was arisen, and al redy dight ; 
For May will have no sloggard yea night." 

Knighte*s Tale, line 1,042. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 233 

And in Milton : — 

" The high embowed roof, 
With antick pillar massy proof, 
And storied windows richly dight." 

II penserosOf line 157. 

To prepare is thus seen passing into the sense of decking and 
of dressing. Hence to dight off is to undress. 

*'The ploughman he comes home fu' late, 
When he wi' w^rk is weary ; 
Dights off his shirt, that is se wet ; 
And supper makes him cheery." 

Song, " Tke PhughmaH."— Bell's Rhymes^ 181 2. 

The word becomes most frequently used in the dialect, how- 
ever, in the sense of tidying, setting in order, and, so, of 
cleaning. 

" Item, paid to Robert Thompson for dygkting the Cay 11 Croose (Cail 
Cross) this quarter, i2d." — Newcastle Municipal Accounts, November, 1561. 

*' Paid for digkting the Merchants' hall and the court against the feste, 
6d." — The same, October, 1595, 

" Digkting the fore-street, and carrying away the rubbish, il. 6s. 8d." — 
Gateshead Accounts, February, 1637. 

" No armourer of the said town shall from henseforth take any dagger 
to dight, or make clean, except the same dagger be made of a sword- 
blade."— Or^y 0/ Mayor of Newcastle^ July 2, 1579. — R. Welford, Hist, of 
Newcastle in XVI. Cent., p. 512. 

•• Your dirty sleeves away will dight 
The slobber of tobacco-brown." 

Song, Newcastle Swineherd's Proclamation, 1822. 

*^ Dight yor eyes" means wipe your eyes ; and so ^^ Dight the 
chair," wipe the chair, or dust it. "Stop till aa dite me 
hands." The word appears to be obsolescent. 

DIGHTER, a winnower of corn. Also a winnowing machine. 

DIKE, DYKE, a fence. The word is applied alike to a hedge, 
a ditch, an earthen or a stone wall when used as a fence. 
•* Aa seed him sittin' in a dike back " — that is, in the shelter 
or hollow of the dike. The goosegrass (Galium aparine) is 
called Robin-run-the'dike, from its habit of clinging and running 
over a hedge with its long sprays. A dike stower is a hedge 
stake. 

•• When I was young and lusty, 
I could loup a dyke." 

Song, Sair FaiVd Hinny. 

"Dike, a ditch. This is only a variety of dialect. Though it seems 
dyke and seugh^ or sough, are distinguish^ in the North ; a dyke being a 
ditch to a dry hedge, either of trees or earth, as in arable lands, where 
the ditch is usually dry all summer ; but a sough, or ditch brimful of 



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234 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

water, as in meadows or sowbrows. are not above half a yard in height.*' — 
Tomlinson, quoted in Ray's Gloss. Ray adds : " A sough is a subterranean 
vault or channel, cut through a hill, to lay coal mines or any other mines 
dry." 

Dikes were also frequently trackways ; and there are many 
earthworks of ancient date which are commonly called dikes. 
One such is known as the " Black-iy^/* which is said to 
extend from the head of North Tyne to the seaside east of 
Morpeth. Another, " Black-iy^^'* ran north and south, 
crossing the Roman Wall at Busy Gap. There are also 
several Grime's dikes^ or Graham's dikes, on the Borders. 
The entrenchments which surrounded the walls of Newcastle 
were formerly called ** The King's Dyke.** 

DIKE. A dep6t for coals at the staith was called a dike. It 
means a jetty or pier by the river side. 

" Every time the keelmen load a keel of coals from the staith, or dyke^ 
they get a '* can." — Northern Tribune, 1854, vol. i., p. 210. 

" A pier, or dike, run out at the north entrance" at Blyth harbour. — 
Mackenzie, Hist, of Northumberland, vol. ij., 1825, p. 425. 

DIKE, a fault in a stratum, caused by a crack, a slip, or by the 
intrusion of an igneous rock, familiarly known to the pitman 
as a ** trouble." " The Ninety Fathom Dike" which passes 
seaward at Cullercoats, is a familiar instance of a dike on a 
colossal scale. Here a "slip" of five hundred feet brings the 
magnesian limestone down against a face of earlier strata and 
presents the dislocation known as a dike. When basalt is 
mtruded, as at Tynemouth Pier, it is called a whin dike. A 
stone dike in a pit is an ancient "wash" which has filled 
up a valley, cutting through the denuded seam of coal, "in 
carboniferous times, before or during the deposition of the 
overlying beds." (Professor Lebour, M. A., Geology ofNorthum- 
bei^land and Durham, 2nd ed., 1886, p. 53.) Clay dikes are most 
frequent, and are often impermeable to water. Rubbish dikes 
are filled with sand, clay, and rounded stones. Slip dikes 
usually contain fragments of the adjacent strata. When 
the dike interrupts the working of a seam of coal it is called 
a downcast dike if the continuation of the seam of coal lies 
at a lower level, and an upcast dike if it is continued at a 
higher level. " Doon-thraa," and "up-thraa" are terms for 
the same. Compare Hitch. 

DIKE-LOUPERS, iraiXisgTtssoTS.—Brockett, 3rd ed. 

DIKER, a hedger or ditcher ; a hedge-sparrow. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 235 

DIKE-SEAM, DYKE-SEAM, a seam Worked nearly on end.— 
Hugh Miller, Geology ofOtUrburn and Elsdon. — Geological Survey 
Memoir , 1887, p. 59. 

DIKE-STOWER, a hedge-stake. See Dike, i. 

DILCE, DULSE, a seaweed, Rhodomenia palmata. 

DILL, to dull {Hodgson MS.), to soothe, to blunt, to silence 
pain or sound. 

DILLER. The phrase **A diller, a doUer, a ten o'clock 
scholar " is appHed to a dull, dilatory schoolboy, ** creeping, 
like snail, unwillingly to school." 

DILL Y. The old engine on the Wylam railway was commonly 
called ** Puffing Billy," or "the Wylam dilly:* Dilly, says 
Mr. Halliwell, is a small public carriage, corrupted from 
French diligence. The counter-balance mounted upon two 
pairs of tram wheels, by means of which the empty tubs in a 
pit are carried up an incline, is called a dilly. 

DINDOM, a great noise or uproar. See Durdom. 

DING, to strike, to bang, to knock with violence. Past tense 
dang ; past participle, dungen or dung, 

*' Thus salle thai dyng on tham ever-mare, 
With gret glowand hamers, and nane spare." 

Hampole d. 1349, Pricke of Conscience. 
Morris, line 7.031. 

'• He bad 

That thai suld tak kobille (cobble) stanes, 
And ding his teth out al at anes ; 
And when thai with the stanes him dang. 
He stode ay lagh and them omang." 

The same. — Morris, p. 288. 

The word is frequently used in the dialect in the compound 
form, as ding-doon and ding-ovrer. ** Stand oot o' the road or 
aa'll ding ye ower " — knock you over. To ding also means to 
deafen, to repeat noisily : — 

** So, if ye please, aw'll myek an end. 
My song ne farther dingin." 

R. Gilchrist, Blind Willie Singing, 1824. 

DING, used for damn. 

DINGLY, deep cut like a ravine. 

'* The steep, wild, and woody bank of Stonecroft burn which joins the 
dingly channel of the brook." — Hodgson, Hist, of Northumberland, iii. 2, 
p. 393- 



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236 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DINMOKT, DINMOND, a ten month. A lamb is called a 
hog in autumn, and after the first shearing of the new year a 
dinmont if it is a male sheep, and a gimmer if it is an ewe. 

" Male sheep from the time of weaning to the first time of clipping are 
called hogs, hoggerels, or lamb-hogs; then they take the name of shearing, 
shearling, shear-hog, or dinmond-ixx^s or rams." — George Culley. Live 
Stock, 1801, p. 18. 

DINNA, DINNET, DIVENT, do not. All these words are 
used with the same meaning, but euphony suggests their 
selection. This is an example of the richness of the dialect 
which may well be noted : — 

'* Aw dinna mean te brag o' this." 

T. Wilson. Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. 198. 

" Dinna let it gan, Mr. Mayor." 

Quayside Ditty, 18 16. 

'* O, dinnet clash the door. 
Divent dee'd ne mair." 

DINNEL, to tingle, as from a blow, or in the return of 
circulation after intense cold. **Aa felt me fing-er ends 
dinnel agyen." 

DINNY, dingy, dun coloured. See Dunny. 

" We tread aw Sheels, se dinny." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Jemmy Jonesons Wherry, 

DINT, as much land as there is mown in one direction at a 
sharpening of the scythe. 

DIP, deep. 

•• She's as dip as the deevil, or ony draw-well." 

J. P. Robson, •• Wonderful Wife." 

Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 107. 

DIP, the downward inclination of strata. 

" There is a Rise, or Ascent, for a Colliery under Ground, and so by 
Consequence the contrary way a Dip or Settling."— J. C, CompUat Collier, 
lyoS, p. 40. 

DIP-HITCH, a hitch, or slip, in a bed of coal which casts 
down the seam below the level at which the hitch is found. — 
Greenwell, It is also called a doon-tkraa, or doon-cast^ or dipper. 

DIPNESS, depth. " The well's nee dipnessr 

DIPPER, or DOWNCAST, a fault in strata by which the 
coal is thrown down to a lower level. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 237 

DIPPER, a very shallow wooden dish which floats on the 
water in a tub, or " skeel," and so prevents splashing over 
when the vessel is borne on the head. A flat piece of wood, 
called a ** stiller/* is also used for the purpose. 

DIPPER, the water ouzel, Hydrohata cinclus. Also called the 
water plot and water crow, 

DIP-SIDE, the low side.— W. E. Nicholson, Coal Trade Gloss., 
1888. 

DIP-TROUBLE, DIP-HITCH, or DIP-DYKE, where the 
coal on the other side is thrown down. — The same. 

DIRDUM, DIRDOM, DURDUM, DURDRUM, DORDUM. 
Noise and excitement, a confusion, a hurly-burly, needless 
stir or noise, din. 

" For aw their Dirdotn, and their Dinn, 
It was but little they did winn." 

G. Stuart, Jfoco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 70. 

" Syke dirdom 'tween thy pipes and thee." 

The same, p. 44. 

" The dirdum now there's nowse can beat, 
Hawd, Dicky, till aw get a chow ! 
Here, aw say, Willy, gie's a leet ! 
Dick, damn ye, hand about a low !" 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1827, pt. ii., v. 32. 

" It raised such a durdem. 
The stones and the brick-bats flew up like a cloud." 

Song, Newcastle i» an Ufroar^ 1821. 

DIREC, direct. When used for «* instantly," it is often "the 
rec-lys.*' 

DIRL, to produce a deafening or a painful vibration. ** Hear 
hoo the win*s dorlitt.*' To ** dirl the elbow " is to strike the 
sensitive bone of that part — the "funny bone," as it is 
called. 

" Thy tongue runs like wor pully wheel, 
And dirls my lug like wor smith's hammer.'* 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, ed. 1872, p. 8. 

DIRT, DIRTY, applied to the weather in heavy rain. " Dirty 
weather." ** A dirty night " is a wet and ** clarty " condition 
of things. It is also used to express foul-air or nredamp in a 
pit ; also rubbish mixed with coal. 



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238 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DIRT-BIRD, the skua gull. Several species of small birds 
are confounded under the not over-complimentary title of 
dirt-birds, because they sing on the approach of rain. — 
W. Brockie, Legends and Supersiiiions^ p. 136. Mr. Brockie 
mentions the woodpecker, the plover, and the peacock as 
rain birds. But in the case of the skua the term dirt-hird is 
applied to it for an obvious and very different reason. 

DIS, DIZ, dost, or does, *«D« thoo hear me?" "He dis 
nowt aall day.** 

DISANNUL, to injure, to incommode, to contradict, to 
controvert, to dispossess, to remove. — HalliwelVs Diet. The 
word is still in common use. 

" I never disannulled thy cow.** — Brockett. 

DISGEST, to digest. " He hes a bad disgestin" It is still 
common in Northumberland. 

"This is a vety common form of the word in early writers." — 
HalliwelVs Diet. 

DISH, the length or portion of an underground engine plane 
nearest to the pit bottom, upon which the empty set stands 
before being drawn *• in-bye." 

DISHALAGIE, or DISHYLAGIE, the colt's foot, or foal's 
foot, as it is often called. Tussilago farfara^ Linn. A 
mispronunciation of the Latin name apparently. 

DISHCLOOT, dishcloth. 

" For dishcloot serves her apron.nuik." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, p. 11. 

DISHEARKEN, to dishearten. 

DISHED, fuddled, overcome with fatigue or drink. 

" Here Dicky's tongue wad de ne mair, 
His wig was oil'd completely ; 
And every drouthy croney there 
Was dish'd and duin up neatly." 

T. Wilson. OUin' 0' Dicky's Wig, 1826, v. 68. 

DISHER, a turner of wooden bowls or dishes. Within the 
memory of some still living (1886) there was a disker working 
at Mitford. (Obs.) 

DISH-FYECED, hollow-faced. 



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NORTHUMBBRLAlfD WORDS. 239 

DISH-PLATES, in mining, plates or rails dished to receive 
the fore wheels of a tub, to facilitate the teeming. — W. E. 
Nicholson, Coal Trade Gloss.y 1888. 

DISHT, or DEESHT [S.] , just that. 

DISN'T, DIZN'T, does not. " He distCi knaa nowt." 

D ISPORSE, to disburse ; DISPORSEMENT, disbursement. 

DISTA, dost thou. A common colloquialism, as *<Z)i5^aken 
the heed o* the Side ? " Hesta^ hast thou ; wasta, wert thou ; 
istaj art thou ; cansta, canst thou, &c., are examples of similar 
contractions. 

DITARMIN, to determine. " Aa wis ditarmin'd to di'd." 

DITE, to sprinkle flour. 

"She forgat to diie the girdle, an' there's the kyek sittin' on.*' — 
J. L. Luckley, Alnwick Language, 

DITHER, to shake, to tingle. '* Ma fing'rs is ditkerin wi' the 
caad." See Didder and Dother. 

DITHERY-DOTHER, the grass Briza Media. Known also as 
dotherin dicks, ladies* hands, cow quakes, and quakin or tremlin grass. 

DITING, a very small quantity of meal or flour. — Brockett, 3rd 
ed. Probably from the sweeping up of flour on the board 
after it had been used ; the dighting. "Thor wis oney a bit 
deeiin on't." See Dight. 

DITTEN, DITTANY, broad-leaved pepperwort, Lepidium 
latifoliutn, L. 

"There is an herbe whiche hath leaves like ashe leaves, calld Ditten, 
I have found it at Tinmouth Castle, where plentie doe growe upon the 
rockes." — Dr. Wm. Bullein, Booh 0/ Simples, London, 1564. — Quoted in 
S. Oliver's Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. 29. 

"Now destroyed at Tynemouth." — A New Flora of Northumberland and 
Durham. — Natural History Transactions, vol. ii., 1867, p. 124. 

DIV, do. This form is used when the word precedes a vowel 
or an h mute: before a consonant, de is used. ^*Div aa not 
de*d ivvory day ?" "Aw wad div owt aa could." 

" Thor'll be a most wonderful change if we div"—R, Elliott, Pitynan's 
Quarrel. 

DIVAA, do I ? or I do. " D*ye hear us ? "—"Aye, divaa.'' 

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240 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DIVART, to amuse. A person is always said **to be divartcd,*' 
never **to be amused." Divarsion, amusement. 

DIVENT, DIVNT, do not. See also Dinna, Dinnet. 

DIVIL, devil. See Deil. 

DIVOT, turf; a sod. See Duffit. 

' "Jack Peel was a pitman, and also a tbeaker, a business of some note 
when the cottages on the Fell were all covered with divots." — T. Wilson, 
Note to Pitman* s Pay, ed. 1843. 

DIVUS, shy, retiring, moody, melancholy. ** She's a varry 
divus bairn." 

DIZ, does. See Disn't. 

DIZEN, to dress, to bedizen. Dizen'd dressed. 

•' Day dissens the skies."— J. P. Robson, Tiptop Wif$, 1870. 

DOAG [N.],dog. 

DOBBY, a fool, a simpleton ; a silly pld man. — Ray, 

DOB-CHICK, the little grebe, the smallest bird of the grebe 
tribe. It is called doh, or dab-chickj from its habit of constantly 
"dabbing" or bobbing under water. — Wedgwood, It is also 
called douchcf, dipper^ or didappcr. In Naves' Gloss', also dive- 
dapper, 

DOCK AN, or DOCKEN, the plant Runtex ohtusifolius, or the 
Rumex Crispins, The seeding stems are called ** Cushy-coos" 
by children, who strip off the ripe seeds in imitation of the 
milking of a cow. The leaves are accounted an antidote for 
the pricking of a stinging nettle. Children rub the sting with 
a docken leaf, repeating the words, " Nettle oot ; docken in." 
SooY'dochen is the Rwnex acteosa. The flowery -docken is the 
Chenopodium bonus Henricus, 

DOCTOR, a hymenopterous insect that emits a dark brown 
fluid from its mouth when caught. This fluid is supposed by 
children to heal sores. 

DOD, to lop, to cut off. Specially applied to the trimming of 
wool from the hind parts of a sheep. 

DOD! an exclamation of wonder. "Dod! but yor a queer 
fellow!" 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 24I 

DODD, a blunt hill, or butt end of a hill. Its occurrence is 
noted thirteen times in place-names in Northumberland. — 
J. V. Gregory, Archaologia /Eliana, vol. ix., p. 64. The 
truncated chimney or ventilator of a malt-kiln is called the 
kiln-dodd. 

•* Sand and gravel dodds.*' — Professor G. A. Lebour, M.A., Geology of 
Northumberland and Durham, 2nd ed., p. 24. 

"Pike, crag, law, head, know, dod, edge, rig, predominate in the 
nomenclature of the Red^ale eminences." — Dr. James Hardy. Hist, of 
Bwks. Nat. Club, vol. ix., p. 452. 

DODD, a fox. This is the family name of one of the old 
** grains " of North Tynedale, who have been located here 
from Saxon times. Reginald of Durham, writing about a.d. 
1 150, gives the history of their progenitor, one Eilaf, who 
with his companions bore the body of St. Cuthbert in the 
flight from Lindisfarne. Being changed into the shape of a 
fox, his fellow monks prayed to God and St. Cuthbert to 
restore him to his human shape. And from that day all the* 
race of Eilaf bore the name of Tod [Dodd] , which, in the 
mother tongue, signifies a fox. — Dr. Charlton, North Tynedale 
and its Four Surnames^ p. 9. 

DODDED, hornless. Dodded corn, is corn without beards. 
" Dodded sheep, that is sheep without horns." — Rays Gloss. 

DODDER, to trim or clean sheep. See Dother, 2. 

DODDER, to shake. See Dother, Didder, Dither. 

DODDERED, confused, shattered, infirm.— Ha//fa;^//'s Diet. 

DODDERIN'-DICKS, the quivering heads of the briza, or 
quaking grass. 

DODDINS, the fore parts of a fleece of wool, — HalliweiVs Did, 

DODEY, George. " Here's aad Dodey comin*." 

DOD-LIP, or DOG-LIP, or PET-LIP, a projected lower lip 
indicating a pet or pout. ** Dinna hang a dog-lip that way.*' 

DOFF, to put off, or divest of anything. " Doff ^nd don one's 
clothes, contracted from do-off and do-on" to put off and on. — 
Rays Gloss., 1691. 

DOG, a chock or block ; anything used to hold back. Dogs^ 
pieces of wood at the bottom of an air door. The part of tlie 
chain which is fastened to the rope. (Mining Glcss, Newcastle 
P 



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242 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

TermSf 1852.) The nails with a hooked head used for holding 
down tram rails. See Bitchhail. Dog, used in timber work, 
is an iron bolt, made up to about a foot in length, with iron 
pointed ends. These ends are bent at right angles to the 
bolt, and are driven into the timber which they are required 
to hold together. 

" A wooden utensil in the rude form of a dog, with iron teeth for 
toasting bread." — Brqchett. 

" Clamps— -irons at the ends of fires, to keep up the fewel. In other 
places caUed creepers, or dogs." — Ray's Gloss., 1691. 

DOG-CRAB, the shore crab. 

DOG-DAISY, the ox eye daisy. — Ckrysanthemun leucatUhemuM. 

DOG-HEAD, the hammer of a gun lock. 

DOG-HIPS, the fruit of the dog rose, Sec—Rosa camna, &c. 
Dog'hips and cat-haws are commonly associated by children. 
Cat 'haws are hawthorn berries. 

DOG-LOUP, a narrow slip of ground between two houses, 
only wide enough for a dog to pass. *^ Dog-loup Stairs,'* a 
street name in Newcastle. 

"The narrow space allowed for eaves droppings, between houses, is 
known as a *dog-loup* (dog leap or jump)." — ^John Nicholson, Folk-Speech 
of East Yorkshire, 1889, p. 5. 

DOGS, tlie dog-fish. [Holy Island.] 

DOG-SHORES, in ship launching, are the last shores to be 
knocked away. They hold back the vessel on the ways. 

DOITER, to be silly, like an old man. " He doitcred on aboot it." 

DOITERED, imbecile, silly. " Yor like a doitered aad fule." 

DOLE, a dole of land is a strip dealt out or allotted, or a strip 
of pasture left between furrows of ploughed lands. See 
Deal. 

DOLLUP, a lump or large piece. ** The hyel dollup." 

DOLLY, a clothes washing stick, made with feet, but otherwise 
like a poss-stick. 

DOLLY, a contrivance attached to a chainmaker*s anvil for 
pressing the link after it is welded. A machine for punching 
iron. 

" A punching dolUy, 16J cvitsy— Inventory of Wallsmd Colliery, 1848. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 243 

DOLPHIN, a mooring post in a river. 

DON, in place-names, a hill^ sometimes den^ as Wari^»-laW) 
where law has been added pleonastically. Don occurs upwards 
of fifty-seven times in Northumberland place-names. 

DON, to put on, or " do on," Donned, dressed. See Doff. 
" She*s ready donned, like Willy Ho's (Hall's) dog."— OU Saying. 

DONCH, fastidious, over-nice, squeamish, especially applied to 
one who has been drunk over night. — HalliwelVs Diet, See 
Dench. 

DONCY, DONSY, fat, puffed up, important, unlucky. (Scarce.) 

•' That donsU laddie. Billie Brown." 

Potmst F. Donaldson, Glanton, p. 4. 

DONK, dank, moist, humid. 

DONKINDALE, DANK-IN-DALE, DUNCAN-DYEL, 
humidity rising in the evening in the hollow parts of 
meadows. A raw mist on the water. It is difficult to explain 
this peculiar word ; but a key to its meaning is possibly found 
in " down come," a very common expression for a sudden fall 
of rain. Dyel is to divide, to part asunder, just as a sudden 
fog would shut out the view. 

" Swasodanly he sal doun come.'* — Hampole,d. 1349, Pricke of Conscience, 
line 4,821. 

DONNAT, DONNIT. DONOT, DONNERT, DONNERD, 
a wild, purposeless, wanton one. Donnat (dow naught), that 
is, thrive not. Daw or Dow, to thrive. " He neither dees 
nor daws" that is, he neither dies nor mends. '* He'll never 
dow,*' that is, he will never be good. — Ray's Gloss., 1691. It 
is often applied to one with want of perception ; naturally 
stupid. ** She's a poor, silly, donnert body." 

'* Wor awdist lass, Jinny, the slee witchin donnit. 
Had coaxed her and minnie te buy her new stays." 
W. H. D., •• The Pitman's Tickorr 

Allan's Collectiont 1863, p. 352. 

"Janet thoo donot, I'll lay my best bonnet 
Thou gets a new gude man afore it be night." 

Robert Surtees, Death of Featherstonehavgh. 

DOO, a little cake, often made in shape like a child. " A 
yull doo" " Comey doos,'* ** A cruppy-dow" 

DOOK, a bathe. " He ye had a dook yit ? '* 

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244 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DOOK, to dip or to duck overhead in water, to dive. Also to 
duck the head to avoid a missl^. Compare Jook. 

** Payd for the doukinge stouU 12^" (duckiag stool). — Gateshead Church 
BookSt 1628. 

•• Aw'd dooh her in wor engine powen," 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i., v. 64. 

DOOL, a cramp pin. See Dowell. 

DOOL, DOLE, DEUL, grief, woe. Sometimes used as an 
interjection. See Deull. 

" God shilde you from all dooU and shem." — W. Bullein, Redesiale 
Beggar, 1564. 

" • O dool,* quo he, • how can I thrive I' " 

James Proudlock, Cuddie and his Crawin* Hen, 

DOON, DOWN, to throw down. 

" We down'd byeth him and Davy-o." 

J. Selkirk, d. 1843. Swalteell Hopping. 

DOON, down. See note on ow, under Coo. 

*' Ho ! lizzen, aw ye neighbors roun, 
Yor clappers hand and pipes lay doon ; 
I've had a swagger through the toon." 

W. Midford, Pitman's Ramble, 1818. 

DOON-BY, along, or near by. " Will ye be dwn-by thi neet ?" 
** Aa*s gaan doon-by.** 

DOONCAST, DOWNCAST, in a downward direction.— 
W. E. Nicholson, Coal Trade Gloss., 1888, under downcast, 

DOONCAST, or DOWNCAST SHAFT, the shaft by which 
the air enters the mine, as the *' upcast" is that by which 
return air is discharged. 

DOONCAST, DOWNCAST, a *' trouble," or dyke, or dis- 
location of the strata or " fault " by which a seam of coal 
and its associated beds are cast down to a lower level. See 
Dipper, Doon-thraa, Dip-hitch. 

DOON-COME, DOWNCOME, a descent. Generally applied 
to reduced circumstances. ** He's had a sair doon-come^ poor 
body." Also a heavy fall of rain or snow. ** It's sic a doon- 
come as aa nivver saa i' me life." The down pipe for rain- 
water in a house front. 

DOON -DAD, a puff of smoke coming into the room from the 
chimney. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 245 

DOON-I-THE-MOOT, depressed or out of sorts, like a bird in 
the moult. "What's the maiter wi' Tom? He's sair 
doan-i-t he-moot" 

DOON-LYIN, a lying in. 

DOONPOOR, a downpour, a heavy rain. " It com on a parfit 
doonPoor" 

DOON-SITTIN, a location, a home, especially applied to a 
place likely to prove of permanent comfort. " He*s getten a 
canny doon-sittin.'* Brocket t, under down-siititig, describes it 
as ** a comfortable settlement, especially in marriage. ** Ah, 
hinnies, she wed him just for a down-sitting*' [Newcastle] — 
said of a handsome young girl who marries a rich old man, 
where it is obvious that the ladyloves the house and furniture 
as dearly as she does her husband. 

DOONTHRAA, DOWNTHROW, the dip or low side of a 
hitch or dyke. — W. E. Nicholson, Coal Trade Gloss., 1888, 
under downthrow, 

DOON-THRUSSEN, thrust down, put down by force. 

DOO-OR, door. A frequent pronunciation. 

DOOR-CHEEK, the side posts of the doorway. 
" To shew them we deal wi* Newcassel, 
Twee Blackeys sal mense the dor-cheek.*' 

W. Midford, Pitmatt^s Courtship, 1818. 

DOORS, used underground in a pit, where, unless a passage 
were occasionally required, " stoppings ** would be necessary. 
They are usually placed in pairs, one being at a few yards 
distance from the other, so that when one is open the other 
may be closed. Several different descriptions of doors are 
employed, of which are the following : — Frame-doors, man- 
doors, fly- doors or swing-doors, bearing or main doors, sheth- 
doors, &c. — W. E. Nicholson, Coal Trade Gloss., 1888. 

DOOR-STEED, the doorway. " Set the skeel i' the door-steed.'' 

DOOR-STYEN, the threshold. ** She's nivver crossed wor 
door-styen sin a twelmonth past." 

DOOSE, DOUSE, comely, comfortable. 

" Shem bin ye. says I, ye should keep the king douse.** 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Canny Newcastle. 
" The duke e'er has been byeth wor glory and pride, 
, For dousely he fills up his station." 

T. Wilson. Northumberland Free 0' Newcastle, 1824. 



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246 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DOOSE, DOWSE, to beat, to slap, to flap. " Aa'U doost yor 
jacket for ye " — I will thrash you soundly. " She gav him a 
reglur doosin" 

DOOSEY-CAP, the punishment inflicted in a boys' game, 
where the victim is compelled to run the gauntlet through two 
ranks, each boy in which stands ready, cap in hand, to give 
a '* bat " with it as the object of the game runs past. 

DOOT, doubt. 

" Thor*s mony a voice that is welcome, nee doot. 
But the bonniest soond that aa knaa is ' Lowrp oot.' " 

Song, Howdonfor J arrow. 

DOOTIN, doubting. 

DOR, fear, numbness as the result of trepidation. '* Aw was iv 
a parfit dor at the time " — I was in a perfect state of fear, or 
paralyzed with fear. 

DOR [T.] , dare, a variant of dar. " Aa dor bet ye owt it will, 
noo.*' 

DORDUM, DIRDUM, a great noise, uproar. See Dirdum. 

DORG, a day's work. See Darg. 

DORL, to shake, to vibrate. See Dirl. 

DOR-LINE, the line used for catching mackerel. 

DORMANT, the large beam lying across a room, a joist.— 
HcUliweWs Diet. 

"For renewing our dormand, 20s." — Trinity Housi Accounts, 1550.— 
R. Welford, Hist, of Newcastle XV L Cent., p. 273. 

" Sometimes called a sleeper." — Todd. 

DORNET, dare not. 

"Aa iornet gan hyem for me life." — ^James Horsley, Geordy an the 
Sovereign, 1883. 

DORSNT, dare not. 

" Folks dorsent say owt tiv him." — Ed. Corvan, Fire on the Quay, 1854. 

DORST, durst. " Let him come to me if he dorst, noo." 

DORT, dirt. " He's aal ower muck an' dort.'' 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 247 

DORTY, dirty, conceited, contemptible. " Hor, an hor dorty 
pride ! " " She's a dotty body." Also wet and stormy, 
applied to the weather. " It's a dorty neet." 

•• The hearth is a* wi* cinders strewn, 
The floor wi* dorty duds." 

T. Wilson, The Washing Day. 

DOSOME, healthy, with promise of improvement in it, as a 
" dosome beast " — a beast likely to turn out well. 

DOSSY, dull, not bright ; applied to seeds. Soft, not crisp. — 
Brockstt, Compare Deased. 

DOTHER, DODDER, DITHER, DIDDER, to shake, to 
quiver, to tremble with age, to shake with cold. 

" Ham's mother dothered like a duck." 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Hamlick, Prince 0* Denton, 

DOTHER, to clean away the dirty wool from near the tails of 
sheep. See Dod, i, and Dodder, i. 

DOTHERIN-DICKS, common quaking grass, Briza media, 

DOTHERS, the Spergula arvensis. Called ^\so yawr. 

DOTHERY, shaky. " Aa canna write ; me hand's se dothcry 
thi day." 

DOTTLE, the tobacco left at the bottom of a pipe after 
smoking. In refilling a pipe, where twist is smoked, a 
common practice is to save the dottle and put it on the top of 
the new-filled pipe. *• Aw like a baccy dottle to leet wiv." 

DOUBLE-CHUCKERS, two of a kind ; twins. 

DOUBLE-DUTCH, unintelligible talk. " Ye taak doubk-Dutch, 
coiled agyen the sun " — said of a child or of any one speaking 
indistinctly. Compare Galic. 

DOUBLE-HANDED GEAR, heavy drilling tools which 
require two men to use them. — Mining Gloss, Newcastle TermSy 
1852. 

DOUBLER, a platter, a large dish, plate, or bowl. (Obs.) 
See DuBBLER. 

DOUBLE-TRAM, a tram in a pit when worked by a "heed's- 
man and foaleys " — that is, by more that a single putter. 



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2.|8 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DOUBLE-WORKING, in a pit, where more than one man is 
put to work in any one working place. — Mining Gloss. Newcastle 
Terms f 1852. 

DOUBTSOME, doubtful. ** She may pull through ; but aa's 
varry dootsome,'* 

DOUF, DOUFEY, low-spirited. " He wis varry doufey:' The 
latter word is sounded as douf-vey. See Dowf. 

DOUFY, damp, humid, wet. 

DOUP, the buttocks. 

" Yor canny dowp is fat and roond." — R. Nunn, d. 1853, Sandgati Wife's 
Nurse Song, 

DOUP, to dump, or thump, especially on the hinder part. 
" Here, lads, let's doup him." 

DOUPIN, a thrashing. " Aall gi* ye a good doupin.** 

DOUR, hard, sour-looking. •• That's a dour lookin* chep." 
•• Dinnet leuk dour it us." 

J. P. Robson, d. T870, Sang 0' Solomon, cb. i.. v. 6. 

DOUSE-THE-ODD-UN, the game of French tag. 

DOVER, the water in which a salmon has been boiled, served 
up as sauce for the fish. [Berwick.] 

DOVER, to go lightly to sleep, to fall into a dose. •* She's just 
dover'd, silly thing." " Dinna scranch on the floor ; yor fethor's 
just dove/t.'* ** Aa dovered ower." 

DOW, dear. Used in affectionate address. (Obs.) 
" My Dow, quo she, the're wond'rous bonny 1 
My Dow (quo she), it's very strange." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, pp. 24, 26. 

DOW, to be able to. (Scarce.) 

" As mickle as four o' their braid backs dow bear " — Johnie Armstrang. 

DO WELL, DOO-EL, an iron or wooden cramping or fastening 
bolt. The wooden pins that connect the fellies in a cart 
wheel are termed, by carpenters, dooled. Duelled is also applied 
to a pin used by coopers to keep the edges of the staves from 
starting. 

" A Doul — a nail sharpened at each end ; a wooden pin or plug to fasten 
planks with." — HalliweWs Diet. 

"In mining, an iron bolt sometimes used in putting main brattice 
together ; a portion of the bolt being let into the under plank, and the 
remainder passing into a hole in the upper plank.'' — GnenweU, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 249 

DOWF, dull, spiritless. '' Dowf and blunkit "— dull and 
disappointed. 

" Lord Dacre fain wonld see the bride, 
He sought her bower alane ; 
But dowf and blunkit grew his look 
When Lady Jean was gane." 

Robert White, Lady Jtan, 1842. 

DOWIE, DOWY, dull, depressed. " It wis a dowie day when ' 
the lad went away." ** Cheer up, hinny, dinna leuk dowie like 
that." 

DOWK, a broken mass of shale. — Hugh Miller, Geology of 
OtUrhurn and Elsdon, — Geological SurveyMemoir^ 1887. 

DOWLY, doleful, miserable, lonely, darksome, awe inspiring. 
Of a far-away, lone country house, it is said, ** It's a dowly 
pleyce i' the wunter time." A Hexhamshire rhyme says : — 
"Dowly Dotland stands on the hill, 
Hungry Yareesh (Yarridge) looks at it still ; 
Barker's House a little below, 
There's mokes i' the cairn at Hambarn Ho." 

" Mokes r the cairn " — maggots in the churn. Ho is the 
Hexhamshire pronunciation of hall. 

" We'll moralise, for dowly thowts are mair wor friends than foes, 
For death, like when the tankard's out, brings a* things tiv a close." 
R. Gilchrist, Lamentation of Bold Archy^ 1824. 
•• Ma dowly cavel ** — (my doleful lot). 

T, Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i., v. 48. 
" This dowly lot's been Nelly's." 

The same, pt. iii., v. 52. 
"The Quay, just like some dowly place, 
Wi" troubled spurrits haunted." 

T. Wilson, Captains and the Quayside. 

DOWN. See Doon and following words. 

DOWNA, unable to. See Dow, 2. (Scarce.) 

" Up and down I dow no' ride." [In margin, dow no* — ^am not able.] 
G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 62. 

DOWNDER, a repast. " Make your downder ** — that is, take a 
good hearty meal. ** Your downder' s ready." 

DOWN-HOUSE, the back kitchen.— Bro^^/^ 

DOWP, the carrion crow. 

DOWP, the buttocks. See Doup. 

" Some hardly fligged ower the dowp." 

T. Thompson, d. 18 16. Canny Newcastle, 



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250 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DOWPY, the youngest child, the youngest of a hatching of 
birds. 

" A dowpy wife *' (that is, a ladv in the family way). 

J. P. Robson, "Pawnshop in a Bluu.** 
Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 340. 

DOWSE. See Doose, 2. 

DOWTOR, daughter. 

** Like a lily 'mang thorns is maw love amang the dowtors.** 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870,, Sang 0' Solomon, Northumberland 
version, ch. ii., v. 2. 

DOXY, a sweetheart, in an innocent sense. — HaUiwelL 

DOZEN, a galloway's load of pollings of birch and alder, varying 
from ten to a hundred in number. — Bailey's View of Agriculture 
in County of Durham, 

DOZZENED, without spirit or energy; dazed. The word 
has much the same meaning as dazed, which is, benumbed, as 
from cold or fright, a condition in which the spirit, or life, or 
sap has gone out of a person or thing. Compare Daze, 
Deased, and Deasy. 

" The joiners a' pin'd in wi' drouth, 
Shrunk up to spelks, and doxxen'd." 

T. Wilson, The Oilin* 0' Dichy's Wig, 1826. 

DOZZLE, the tobacco left at the bottom of a pipe and put on 
the top of the next fill. " Neebody can smoke twist without 
a dazzle.'* See Dottle. 

DOZZLE, a paste flower on top of a pie cover — the straw 
ornament on top of a stack. 

DRAA, to wind coal either along the workings or in the shaft. 
Also to remove props in a pit. 

" Draa me to the shaft, it's time to gan hyem." 

Old Song, The ColUcr's Rant. 

DRAAS, drawers. " A kist o' dtaas " — a chest of drawers. 

DRAA-TO, or DRAWTS, a home in want. 

" Mv father, poor man, has little of this world's gear, but his house is 
a kind drawts for his bairns when they stand in need of a home.'*— 
Hodgson MS. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 25I 

DRAAIN A JUD, bringing down the face of coal, previously 
set free to fall, by withdrawing the sprags after kirving. <* In 
mining parlance, 'draain a jud' also means the removal of 
the timber or props after the coal has been taken away in 
what is termed a broken lift, and is a dangerous, if not the 
most dangerous work that a deputy is called upon to do in 
his daily duties in the pit or mine." — " Northumbrian," in 
Weekly Chronicle, Aug. lo, 1889. 

DRAAK, DRAK, DRAUK [N.] , DROAK [W.-T.] , to saturate. 
Also to absorb any liquid or dry it up with a dry medium. 
*• Put a bit o' whitenin on the oil an' draak 't up." 

" Me heed's drackt wi' weet." — ^J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Sang of Solomon, 
Northumberland version, ch. v., v. 2. 

** A finer kind of barley meal, called, by way of distinction, flour, is 
sometimes draukti with milk, and made into thin, crisp cakes or 
biscuits." — S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. z6o. 

DRAFT-NET, a salmon net for river fishing. See Drift- 
net, 

DRAG, a rake for drawing out litter from cattle lairs and other 
places: See Hack. 

DRAG, the scent left by an otter on his track over the land. 

DRAG, a sprag of wood thrust between the spokes of a wheel 
to act as a brake. 

DRAG, in mining, the friction of the air on the surface of the 
passages in which it travels. — W. E. Nicholson, Coal Trade 
Gloss., 1888. 

DRAK, or DRUCK, drank, Xhep.t. ol drink. 

DRAP, a drop. 

" When Cheviot tap puts on his cap, 
O* rain we'll he' a wee bit drap*' 

North Northumberland Proverb. 

DRAPE, a farrow cow, or cow wTiose milk is dried up. Drape 
sheep, the refuse sheep of a flock. — Ray's Collection, 1691. 
(Obs.) See Eild and Geld. 

DRAUGHT, the worst sheep " drawn," or culled out from a 
flock. ^^ Draught ewes." In parts of England these are called 
culls. 

DRAW. See Draa. 



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252 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DRAWD-N AIL, a flat-pointed nail. [Winlaton term.] (Obs.) 

DREAP, DREEP, to drip. 

" Maa*s heed's dreepin wi dew." — ]. P. Robson, d. 1870, Sang 0* 
Solomon, Newcastle version, ch. v., v. 2. 

**Dreeping pannes." — Inventory of Sir William Reade. — Raine's North 
Durham, p. 178. 

DREDGE-SUMP, a settling hole, through which water is 
passed on its way to a pump, in which grit, &c., is lodged, 
and so prevented from entering the pump. 

DREE, a sledge or cart without wheels. On the authority of 
the Rev. John Hodgson, it appears {Hodgson MS.) that drees 
continued in use in Northumberland till as late as 1760-70. 

DREE, to suffer, to bear, to endure. 

" Whatever may be her punishment in the next world, she certainly 
drted a heavy penance in this." — Richardson's Table Booh, Legendary Div., 
vol. i., 1842, p. 36. 

*' He lughe never, ne made blythe chere, ' 

For drede of dede that he most efte dreghe." 

Hampole, d. 1349, Priche of Conscience, 1. 6,522. 

" Nor ever shall I wed but her 

That's done and dree'd so much for me." 

Lord Beicham, 

DREE, DRIE, dread, to dread. 

" Alas ! he'll doe you drie and teene." 

Ballad, Northumberland Betrayed by Douglas. 

" The English louns may hear, and dree." 

Joch 0* the Side. 

" Ye*ll dru the deeth ye*ll nivver dee." 

Northumberland Proverb. 

DREE, long, seeming tedious beyond expectation, spoken of a 
way. A hard bargainer, spoken of a person. — Ray, 169 1. 
(Scarce.) 

DREED, to dread. " Aa's dreedin the warst, hinney." 

DREED, dread, fear. •• Aa've a parfit dreed on't." 
"Theday ofrfwif." 

Hampole, d. 1349, Priche of Conscience. 
" Weive thy lusts, and let thy ghost thee lede, 
And trouth thee shall deliver, it is no drede.** 

Chaucer, Good CounsaU, 

DREEDFUL, dreadful. 

DREEP, to drop, to drip. " Dreepin wet " — dripping wet. See 
Dreap. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 253 

DREEPY, Spiritless. '* She's but a poor dre^py creetur.*' 

DREEVE, to fly-blow. " It's fly dreevenr 

DREEVEN, driven. ** White as dreevm snaws." 

DREIGH, deceiving. A piece of ground is said to be dreigh 
when there is more of it than there appears to be. — Brockett, 
3rd ed. Compare Dree, 4, above. 

DRIDDLE, to loiter, to be slow in doing anything. "What 
are ye driddlin on there at ?" 

DRIE, dread. See Dreed and Dree, 3. 

DRIFT. A drift is a place driven to explore or reach the 
coal. A ** stone-(/r»^ " is one driven through sandstone or 
strata other than coal. 

" Oh ! marrow, oh ! marrow, where hast thoa been ? 
Driving the drift from the low seam." 

Old song, The Collier's Rant, 

" We have carried our headways drift about eight or ten yards from 
the pit shaft." — Compleat Collier, 1708, p. 42. 

•• Drift, a horizontal passage underground." — Bainbridge, Treatise on 
Law of Mines, 1856. 

•• Drift, an inlet for the emission of water in a mine.*'— Brockett, 3rd ed. 

" A head driven on the strike of the coal seam."— Gws/iry's Gloss,, 1883 

** In coal, an exploring place ; usually a pair of companion drifts are 
driven simultaneously for ventilation. Dtifis (called stone-drifts) are 
mostly single. In stone they are driven sometimes for the purpose of 
exploration, but more frequently rendered necessary by the occurrence 
of dislocations in the strata." — Greenwell, 

DRIFT-NET, a salmon net used in the sea. " Drift-net fisher- 
men " are the sea salmon fishers. " Draft -net fishermen " are 
the river fishers. Compare Draft- net. 

DRIFT- WAY, a trackway or road used by drovers. 

DRILLER, one who minds a drilling machine. 

" The amalgamated society of horizontal drillers." — Trades union notice. 

DRIP, a stalsLctite.—Brockett, 3rd ed. 

DRITE, to speak thickly and indistinctly.— H^«te/<j//'s Diet. 
•• To void excrement. — Brockett, 3rd ed. 

DRIVE, to dig, to excavate in a pit. The pitman drives in as 
he digs, or hews his way, or gets the coal. See Drift. 



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254 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DROOK, DROUK, to drench with water. " He wis oot iv aa 
that rain an* gat drooked ti the skin.'* Compare Dook, 2, and 
Draak. 

**Drouh, to drench, to soak, to besmear/'— -Broc^^^. 

DROOND, to drown {pJ. drund), Droanded is also a common 
form of the past tense. 

DROONEDOOT, applied to a colliery that has become filled 
with water, 

DROOT, drought ; DROOTY, droughty. See Drooth. 

DROOTH, thirst. 

'* We'll not wyest ower drams and drouth.** 

Pitman* s Pay, pt. iii., v. 60. 

DROOTHY, thirsty. 

DROP, the arrangement at a coal staith by which a waggon is 
let down to the level of a ship's hatchway. 

DROP, used in the imperative mood for stop. ^^ Drop that" is 
the usual peremptory order to stop doing anything. 

'• Ye cripple ! just drop yor fond gob." 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Maw Wonderful Wife, 

DROP, a trick, a surprise. "What a drop!" — that is, what a 
surprise. A reduction of wages. ** Thor gan in at the drop" 

DROP-DRY, water-tight, said of a building well secured in the 
roof. — Brockett. 

DROPPY, showery. ** It's fair yenoo, but still droppy like." 

DROPS, the common name for fuchsia. 

DROP-STAPLE, a staple (shaft) down which coals are lowered 
from one seam to another. 

DROUK, to drench, to soak. See Draak. 

DROVEN, driven, as with force of circumstances. " She's been 
fair droven to deeth, poor body.*' Droven or druven is used as the 
p.p. of drive. ** Mony a day nev aa droven the gin-gan.*' 

DROVE-WORK, the manner of facing building stones with a 
chisel, as distinguished from broached work. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 255 

DRUBBY, muddy.— Northumberland.— HalUwell, eleventh ed. 
See Druvy. 

DRUCK, or DRAK, p.t. of drink ; p.p. druchtn. " He druck half 
a gallon at a sittin." 

DRUMLY, muddy, thick. JumnUey oxjumly is used in exactly 
the same sense. 

" For right or wrang he made nae matter. 
So he could fish in drumly watter." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686. 

DRUMMOCK, meal and water mixed. — Brochett. 

DRXJND, p.p. of drown. 

" Al thai dtund in the se." 

Cursor Mundi—VisU of the Wise Men, 

DRUNKARD'S CLOAK, a tub with holes in the sides for the 
arms to pass through, the head appearing through a hole 
made in the end, which rested on the shoulders. It was thus 
in former times used in Newcastle for the punishment of 
drunkards and others, who were led through the streets in 
this strange guise. 

DRUV, p.t. of drive ; p*p. druven. ** He druv us ower iv his gig." 
" She's been ower hard druven.'* 

DRUVY, dirty ; literally, troubled as water is troubled. Drovy^ 
or troubled water, is spoken of by Chaucer. 

*• Ayont yon dark an' druvy river." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1829, pt. iii., v. 123. 

DRY, not diluted ; genuine, unadulterated. 

DRY, a division in a quarry or stone where it can be parted. 

DRY- ASK, a lizard, or a water newt when found in a dry place. 
See Ask. 

•• Dry-asks an' tyeds she churish'd.'* 

J. P. Robson, Hamlick, Prince 0' Denton, pt. ii., 1849. 

DRY DIKE, a stone fence, built without lime — that is, with 
dry stones only. 

DUB, a dirty pool. Also a still, deep place in a stream. " He 
floondered amang the dubs " — that is, he splashed and stumbled 
in the puddles. In Whittle Dene there is a deep pool called 
" the whorl dub." 



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256 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DUBBIN, the dregs of fish oil, used for softening leather. An 
angler's bait. 

DUBBLER, or DUBLER, a large dish. 

*■ Two pewter dublsrs, two copper basins, and a pottle pot." — ^Will of 
H. Yowton, 1581.— Richard Wdiord, Hist, of Newcastle, vol. iii., p. 9. 

'* The platters, dubblers, and the delf.*' 

Old song, Description of Sandgate. 

DUBEROUS, DUBERSOME, doubtful. 

DUB-SKELPER, a bog trotter. 

" Like a duh-shelper he trotted.'* 

T. Whittle, •• The Midford Galloways Ramhle." 
BelVs Rhymes^ 1812, p. 175. 

DUCCOT, or PIGEON-DUCCOT, a dovecot. 

" A waste called a duckett lying within the castle of Newcastle.**— 
R. Welford. Hist, of Newcastle in XVI. Cent., p. 498. 

DUCK-AND-DRAKE, the game of throwing flat stones on 
water which tip the surface in their flight. From this game 
probably originated the phrase of making ducks and drakes of 
one's money — that is, spending it foolishly. — HaHiwdPs Did, 

DUCKEY, a drink ; generally used in child talk. *• Dis thoo 
want a dtickey, hinny ? '* 

DUCK-STONE, a game played with smooth water- worn 
stones, called ducks, 

DUDS, clothes ; applied generally to working clothes. 

•• Dudds, A rag ; clothing of an inferior kind."— Rev. Canon Greenwell, 
Gloss, to the Boldon Buke. 

" The duds thrawn on, the breakfast tyen, 
They're ready for another start." 

T, Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. ii., v. 17. 

" Clad in hard labour's hyemly duds." 

T. Wilson, Death of Coaly. 

DUDDIN, an outfit of clothes ; a suit of clothes. 

" I packed up all my duddin." 

R. Gilchrist, A Voyage to London, 1824. 

'* My flannel duddin donned, thrice o'er. 
My birds are kissed, and then 
I with a whistle shut the door 
I may not ope again." 

Jos. Shipsey. 

DUDDY, ragged. ** A duddy laddy " is a ragged boy. " He 
put on his duddiest clothes." 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 257 

DUERGAR, a goblin race of beings known on the Border and 
characterised as ''thie worst and most malicious order of 
Fairies." Brownies, rather than fairies, they should be called, 
for a duergar is a brown elf, and the apparition of "the 
Brown Man o* the Moors" has ** flayed** many a herd lad in 
the solitudes of Northumberland. 

DUFF, dough. The guttural sound is still preserved in many 
words which in modern English are softened, as dough is to 
" doe.*' See Pleuff, Thruff, used still for plough and 
through — " thruff styen.*' 

'* 'Twas ne use then to teyk the huff— 
Aw wesh'd the currans, mey'd the duff.'* 

J. P. Robson, Wor Mally Tomed Bloomer. 

DUFF, to sprinkle over with flour or fine powder, as in dredging 
or puffing a burn or sore place. " Duffin' the bairn." 

DUFF, coal dust or smaller coals, after separation of the nuts. 

DUFFIT, a sod. " Z)«^/-theaked "—thatched with sods. 

" Wor canny houses, rftt^Mheek'd." 

T. Wilson, The Oilin' 0' Dickys Wig, 1826. 

DULBART, DULBARD, DULBERT, a dullard, a dull person, 
a thickhead. 

"A feat that dulberts cudent de." 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. iii., v. 104. 

•* To learn your exercise be quick, 
An' dinna be a dulbard" 

Poems, T. Donaldson, Glanton, 1809, p. 45. 

DULL. " Dull o' hearin *'— hard of hearing. 

DUMB-DRIFT, in mining, a drift by which the return air is 
carried into the upcast shaft without passing over the 
furnace. — W. E. Nicholson, Coal Trade Gloss, , 1888. 

DUMB-SCREEN, a screen through which the small coals will 
not pass. — W. E. Nicholson, Coal Trade Gloss,, i888. 

DUMMY, a dumb or silent person ; a blank or make-believe. 
A dummy tram was one moved by two boys, or by a man and 
a boy. 

•• She's nobbut a dummy eye." 

His Other Eye, 1880, p. 3. 

DUMPLIN, pudding of flour and suet or similar ingredient. 
Pudding is the intestines, and is never used for the above 
except for something foreign, as Yorkshire pudding. 
Q 



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258 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DUMPY, sullen, discontented, in the dumps. 

DUN, a yellowish brown colour. " A dun horse,'* ** a dun mare," 
** a dun cow.*' 

" John Read, charged with the stealing of one Dunn mare." — Calendar 
of Prisoners at NewcasHtt 1627. 

DUNCH, to knock against ; to nudge. 

" To dunch people off is most rascally mean." 

" Simpsons Failure.'*— MarshalVs Songs» 1827. p. 182. 

*' Somebody duncked his airm." 

Geordys Last, 1878, p. 9. 

DUNDERHEED, a blockhead ; a simpleton. ** What's the 
dundcrheed myed on't ? " 

DUNGEN, DUNG (the^./. of ding), driven or knocked about 
with violence. See Ding. 

" Giff ony be tane with the loaf of a halpenny in burgh, he aw throu 
the toun to be dungyn. And for a halpenny to iiij penys worth, he aw 
to be mar fayrly dungyn.** — Frag. Vet.i quoted by Dr. Murray, Scottish 
Dialects, p. 32. 

•• They'd dung my puer harns out." — G. Stuart, Jfoco-Serious Discourse, 
1686, p. 35. 

*' Aa thowt he'd a dungen doon the door; he cam wi sic bats on*t." 

DUNGEON ABLE. A dungeonable body; a shrewd person; 
or, as the vulgar express it, a divelish fellow. As Tartarus 
signifies hell, and a dungeon ; so dungeon is applied to both. — 
Rays Collection f 1691. 

DUNG-TEAZER, the Arctic skua gull, Skua longicaudus, Brisson. 

DUNK, damp, dank. See Donk and Donkindale. 

DUNNY, dark-coloured, smoke-beclouded, and, so, of a dun- 
coloured aspect. 

" Tyneside seemed clad wiv bonny ha's, 
An' furnaces sae dunny.'* 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Jemmy Joneson's Wherry. 

*' Come thick night, 
And pall thee in the dunnest smoke of hell." 

Macbeth, i., 5. 

DUNSTANBOROUGH-DIAMOND, a name popularly given 
to the crystals occasionally found near Dunstanliorough 
Castle on the coast ; and applied proverbially to the younger 
branches of females belonging to that locality. — M. A. 
Denham, Folk-lore of Northumberland, <S»c., 1858, p. 44. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 259 

DUNT, to strike or give a blow on the backside. This was a 
favourite custom among schoolboys, who held up the victim 
by legs and arms and struck the nether part of the person 
against a stone. 

DUNT, bad coal, mineral charcoal; any imperfection in the 
quality of a seam of coal. — Brochett, 

DUNT-ABOOT, a person ill-used, made a convenience of, or 
knocked about. ** Aye, poor thing, she's a fair dunt-aloot,'' — 

DUNTER, a porpoise. 

DURANCE, very strong, enduring material. (Obs.) 

" An upper body of durance, pair of new black hose, and a new apron of 
durance:*— V^'iW of William Grey, Miller, Newcastle.— Richard Welford, 
Hist. ofNewcntU, vol. iii., p. 32. 

DURKE, to laugh— Northumberland.— HalliufeWs Diet. (Obs.) 

DURR, numb.— Brockett. 

DUSH, to thrust, to strike. (Obs.) 

" For thare sal be swylk raryng and ruschyng. 
And rawmpyng of deeveles and dynggyng and duschyng," 
Hampole, MS, Bowes, p. 214. 

DUSTIN, a thrashing, a hiding. " Aa'U gi' ye sic a dustin as'll 
gar ye scart where it*s not yucky." Compare with Dush. 

DUSTY-MILLER, a humble bee that leaves on the hand, 
when taken hold of, a light dust. The plant Auricula. 

DUZZY, dizzy, giddy, foolish. ** Ye duzzy beggor, what are 
ye deein ?" ** Me heed wis quite duzzy."' 

DWALM, a slight illness, a faint fit. "He tyuk a kind o' 
dwam^ like." 

DWALM-OFF, to doze off to sleep, to go off into a faint. 
•• Ah dwalmed off to sleep "-^ Dr. Embleton MS, 

DWAMY, faint. 

•• Bet tomed dwamy, like to fall." 

J. P. Robson, d. 1870, Betty Beesley, 

DWINE, to pine away, to dwindle. 

" Cattle divining away under the power of witchcraft." — T. Wilson, 
Note to Newcastle and Carlisle Railway, 1838. 
" A flour, that es feyre to se 
Than son aftir that it es forth broght, 
Welkes and dwynes til it be noght," 

Hampole, d. 1349, Pricke 0/ Conscience {Morris)^ 1. 704. 



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26o NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

DWINEY, sickly, ill-thriven, dwindling through illness. 

" There was dwiney little Pe^, not se nimmel i' the leg/' 

W. Midford, Pitman's Skellyscope, 1818. 

•* Men are se dwiney noo-a-days." 

W. Oliver, d. 1848, The Lament. 

DWININ, a decline, a consumptive state, from dwine. "She 
tyuk a dwinin, poor thing." 

DYEL, DEAL, DALE, DOLE, to divide, to apportion. 
^^Dyel smaal an* sarve aal." Hence a dyel of land is a 
portion divided, allotted, or dealt out to the occupier. 

•• The tan bad dele the child in tua." — Hampole, d. 1349, Pricke of 
Conscience. 

DYEL, DALE, a deal board. See Thill. 

" But heavy puttin's now forgotten, 
Sic as we had i* former days, 
Ower holey thill and dyels a* spletten, 
Trams now a' run on metal ways." 

T. Wilson, Pitman*s Pay, pt. ii., v. 67. 

DYEM, dame. 

" Will wakened up the drowsy dyem,'* 

T. Wilson, Pitman's Pay, pt. iii., v. 129. 

DYE- SAND, ochraceous sand produced by pulverizing a soft 
sandstone. Its bright colour makes it a favourite article for 
washing over stone floors or steps. 

DYKE. See Dike. 

DYUN, done (pJ. oido). Often given as duin. '^Dyun up" — 
done up, or exhausted. In Northumberland, generally, the 
word is sounded as dc-yun ; on Tyneside as dyun. 

" Aw wonder when they will be duin." 

T. Wilson, Pitman*s Pay, pt. iii., v. 28, 

DYVOUS, moody, melancholy. See Divus. 

EACH, an adze. See Edge. 

EALD, old, also Sige.—Halliwcirs Did. (Obs.) 

EALDREN, elderly. (Obs.) 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 261 

EALE, an island. ^^Eales"' is the name of a hamlet on the 
Tyne, at Knarsdale, and of a portion of the haugh at 
Corbridge. There is a place called Wyden Eels in Halt- 
whistle. Wide-^/s and Bndge-eeh are places on the East 
Allen. On North Tyne there are the Eels, near Wark, 
Bellingham Eels^ and Eels in the parish of Greystead, and 
£^/s-bridge on the Derwent. — Hodgson, Northumherlandy pt. ij., 
vol. i., p. 86, note. These eales, or eels^ are low grounds liable 
to river floods. 

EANY. ^^Eany and light," a term applied to bread when the 
interior has a glazed appearance and is full of holes. 

EAR, year. It is both singular and plural. ** Fower ear come 
May-day." 

EAR, or NEAR, a kidney. 

EARFE, fearful, timorous. See Arf. 

EARTH-FAST. An earth fast, or an insulated stone enclosed 
in a bed of earth, is supposed to possess peculiar properties. 
It is frequently applied to strains and bruises and used to 
dissipate swellings, but its blow is reckoned uncommonly 
severe. — Richardson's Table-bookj Legend. Div., vol. ij., p. 164, 
note. The stones thus specially venerated were wrought 
flints, or stone axe-hammers. Compare Holey-stone. 

EASING-DROPS, the drops of water from the eaves of houses 
after rain. — HalliwelU The word occurs in ^Uvesyng-bord,'' 
the board at the eaves of the house, in account for repair of 
the Heron-pit, at the Black Gate, Newcastle, 1358. 

EASINGS, the projection of the roof of a house; the eaves. — 
Hodgson MS. Also the projection of the covering of a stack 
of com or hay. 

EASTER-MONTH-GIONS, EASTERMAGIONS, the 
esculent (stilh common in meadow ground in the neighbour- 
hood of old castles, villages, and monasteries). Polygonum 
Bistorta of Linnaeus. — Rev. John Hodgson, on Wardley, 
Archaologia Ailiana, vol. i., p. 117. 

EATHE, easy. See Eeth. 

•• The uttermost walles were eathe to win." 

Ballad, The Rising in the Norths 1569. 



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262 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

EAT-OUT, This expression is applied when a level coal- 
drift is turned to the dip, in order to take advantage of (or 
eat-out) a rise hitch. — GrunwelL 

EBB, shallow; an expression referring both to the depth of 
shafts and strata. 

"The coal lies very ebb/'— -Hugh Miller, Geology oj Otterbum and 
Elsdon. — Geological Survey Memoir, 1887. 

ECKY, sorry. " Aw wad be ecky.'* — Brockctt, third edition. 

EDDER, an adder. See Ether. 

EDDLE, money earned. EDDLE, to earn. See Addle. 
•• Savin's good eddied— Proverb, 

EDDLE, putrid water — Northumberland, — HalliwelVs Diet, 

EDGE, a ridge, or rim of ground, generally an escarpment. — 
Hugh Miller, Geology of Otterbum and Elsdon, — Geological 
Survey Memoir^ 1887. There are twenty-one place-names in 
Northumberland into which edge enters (Biddleston-«/^^, 
&c.) — y, V. Gregory, Archaologia ^liana, vol. ix., p. 64. See 
under Dodd. 

EDGE, EADS, an adze. 

EDIE, or EDOM, Adam. 

•• Edom o' Gordon." — Percy Ballads, 

EDOM'S NEEDLE, ADAM'S NEEDLE, or SHEPHERD'S 
NEEDLE, the Scandtx pecten veneris. Called also Witch's 
needle^ and DeiVs darnin needle, 

EE, eye. EEN, eyes. 

** Come to me, ma little laromy, 
Come, thou apple o'ma «*«." 

Thomas Wilson, Pitman's Pay, 1826, pt. i., v. 92. 

Ee is also applied to an orifice, such as the hole in a pick or 
hammer, or a grindstone. The mill-ee, the orifice in the 
casing of mill-stones where the flour is conveyed into the 
spout; or the channel hole by which water passes on to 
the wheel of a water mill. 

•• The mousey she cam to the Mill ee, to the Mill ee, to the Mill ee: 
The mousey she cam to the Mill ee. 

Cuddy alone an' me. 
The mousey she cam to the Mill ee, there the froggy for to see. 
Kick m' leary, cowden dan, Cuddy alone an' me." 

Old Northumberland Rhyme. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 263 

Well-eCy the mouth of a well. Kiln-u, the orifice in a 
lime kiln from which the lime is drawn. The pronunciation 
is generally ee-uk, ee-ih ; plural, ee-yen. See also Eye. 
" That sight he sal se with gastly egheV 

Hampole, d. 1349, Pricke of Conscience. 
M orris , line 2,234. 

EE ! an expression of delight or wonderment. 

EE, you. ** It wis ee *at did it " — It was you who did it. 

EE-BREE, the eyebrow. 

" I would the faem were ower my face, 
Or the mools on my ee-bree,'* 

A. C. Swinburne, Tyneside Widow, i888. 

EECHY, itchy. 

EEL. See Eale. 

EEL-BEDS, the water crowfoot. Ranunculus aquatilis, 

EELD, to yield. ** Hoo much is the coo eeldin ?'* 

EELEITE, ELEATOR, EELY-EELY-ITE, EELY-EELY- 
ATOR, various names for a small eel. A boy who puts off 
his clothes, but fears to bathe, is contemptuously called an 
eely-eely-ite, 

" Eely-eely-ator, cast your tail in a knot 
And I'll thraw ye into the waitor." 

Juvenile Rhyme. 

EEL-WARE, the plant Ranunculus fluitans. Compare Eel- 
beds. 

EEN, eyes. 

EER, year. 

EERAND, an errand, a journey. "He went ance eerand 
for'd " — he went a special journey or errand for it. 

EET [S.] , it. " Aa seed eet mesel.'* 

EETH, esisy—Northumberlaitd.—Halliwell's Dkt. 

" Where ease abownds yt's eath to doe amis." 

Spenser, Faerie Queene, ii., iii., 40. 

EEZ, a form of his. So sounded in such sentences as ** Him 
an* eez new fangJes." When it occurs, however, as in the 
phrase, " If he comes here agyen wi' hcez new fangles," the 
aspirate is strongly marked. 



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264 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

EFA, a small, diminutive person. ** He's nowt but an ^/a." 

EFTER, after. 

EI DENT, industrious. 

EIGHT, eighth. Frounced eit. 

** This is the seeveat or eight.*' — Thomas Bewick, The Howdy, ed. 1850, 
p. II. 

EIGH-WYE, equivalent to •• Well-you-know." A colloquial 
expression sometimes used to express indifference or regret. 
" Eigh-wye ! it canna be helped." " Eigk-wye ! tyek yor aan 
way wi'd." 

EI LD, without milk. " Eild gimmers, eild ewes." — Auctioneer's 
advertisement, Newcastle Daily yournal, April 23, 1887. The 
term is applied to a barren ewe, or to one that has missed 
having a lamb ; but more frequently to a cow after she has 
ceased to give milk, ranging from four months till the time of 
calving. See Geld, 2 and 3. 

EIT, eight. 

EKE, an addition to a building, an added piece. An ^*eke " is 
also the addition to a beehive. 

EKE, EEKE, the dressing or oil in woollen cloth. "The 
eeke's no' oot." 

ELD-FATHER, father-in-law. (Obs.) 

Nicholas Rayne wills that he be buried in the Church of St. Nicholas. 
Newcastle, "as near my eld-father as possible may be." — Richard 
Welford, History of Newcastle ^ vol. iii., p. 329. 

ELDIN, the butter-burr, Petasites vulgaris. See Ell Docken. 

" Called in Northumberland an eldin, in Cambridgeshire a butterbur.'* — 
Turner's Herbal, 1562, ij., 83. 

ELDIN, rubbish, or brushwood, for fuel. 

•• Elding, ov fire-elding, fuel, such as turf, peat, or wood." — Hodgson MS. 

ELDRITCH, ghastly, frightful. See Ellerish. 

** Screachin out an eldritch sound." — Lewis Proudlock, Cuddie and his 
Crawin' Hen. 

ELF-SHOTS, ELF-ARROWS, stone arrow-heads. 
ELICK, Alexander. **Elick's Lonnin' " in Newcastle. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 265 

ELL-DOCKEN, ELDIN - DOCKEN, the butter -burr, 
Petasites vulgaris. See Eldin, i. 

ELLEMS, the bars of a gate. Sometimes called selms. 

ELLER, the alder, Alnus glutinosa, L. See Aller and Oller. 

ELLERISH, dismal, frightful. Halliwell spells it elrkhe, 
giving it as a Durham word. The form is sometimes heard 
SLsyellerisk. It is often written eldritch. 

•• An tllmsh cry"— a fearful, dismal cry.—Brockitt, third edition. 

ELL-SHINDERS, or YELLOW-ELL-SHINDERS, the 
plant ragwort, Senecio yacohaa. Known also as yellow-top- 
ragwort i ox yellow-weed, 

EL-MOTHER, a stepmother. (Obs.) 

ELM-WYCH, the wych-elm, also called the Scotch-elm, Ulmus 
tnontana. 

ELSE, already. ** Hoo quick ye*ve been ! He' ye been there 
elu ?'* It is also used for " in the meantime." ** There noo ; 
that'll dee, ^/s^," But frequently as we use "eh?" when an 
interrogative is meant. ** Wait ye war there, else ?" is 
thus, " Is it not a fact that you were there, eh ?*' 

ELSHINS, the plant Scandix fecten veneris^ L. See Deil's- 
darnin-needle. 

ELSIE, or AILSIE, Alice. " Do ye ken Elsie Marley, hinny ?" 

ELSON, ELSKIN, ELSHIN, ELSEEN, a shoemaker's awl. 
" 600 ehone blades." — Appraisement of the goods of Thomas Liddell. — 
R. Welford, History of Newcastle, XVI. Century, p. 490. 

ELSPITH, ELSPETH. A woman's Christian name, 
Elizabeth. It is not used as an abbreviation of Elizabeth, 
but as a distinct name. 

ELWAYSEES [S.] , in every way. ** Aa*ve tried eet elwaysees, 
an' it winna gan." 

EME, an uncle by the mother's side. — BaiUys Diet. Earn is 
more proper, on account of the etymology, but enie is perhaps 
more common. 

•' Henry Hotspur and his eame, 
The Earl of Wor'ster." 

Drayton, Polyolbion, 22, p. 1,070, 
Nare's Glossary. 
*• Still (1824) used in Northumberland."— Ho<2^5on MS. 



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266 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

EMPY, empty. 

ENCIENT, ENNCIENT, the pronunciation o{ ancient. A ncUni 
means in old forms a standard and a standard bearer. In the 
following entry from St. Nicholas' parish register, Newcastle, 
it is used for "colour-sergeant**: — "1644, Will. Wayre, 
Enncient to Coronell Arishin, bur. 4 Jan." — ^J. R. Boyle, 
Cathedral Church of St, Nicholas, p. 88. "Yours is a very old 
town, Mr. Mayor," said a distinguished guest to the chief 
magistrate of Newcastle. " Yis, sor,*' replied the mayor, " it 
always was an enciettt pleyce." 

END, to set upright, to set on end. Upend is often used 
similarly, and **end it up," or " up end it," are indifferently 
spoken with the same meaning. 

END-ON, having the end towards the spectator. Hence 
conveying the meaning of an advancing body. " The waggons 
wis comin' end-on" 

ENDWEDGE, a fire-brick, gin. long by 4iin. wide, made 2^in. 
thick at one end, diminishing to i^in. at the other. 

ENDWIS, ENDWAYS, forward, on end. " Co' bye, let me 
get endwis wi' me wark." "Even endways" — in an even, 
continuous flow. " He taaked even endwis.'* 

ENDY. An endy fellow is one who is always trying to control 
matters for his own emolument. 

ENEUGH, ENEW, ENOW, enough. 

ENGAGE, to attract. The word is used in the dialect with 
the early meaning which is still present in its form ot engaging — 
attractive — in the literary dialect. 

" Maw bed wad engage ony duchess." 

J. P. Robson, •• Nanny Jackson's Letter.*^ 
Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 237. 

ENGINE-BANK, an inclined plane at a colliery where waggons 
are hauled by a rope and stationary engine. 

ENGINE-PIT, the shaft of a colliery in which the pumps are 
worked. 

ENGINE-PLANE. At a colliery, a level main road, " a road 
on which the tubs are hauled along by ropes from a stationary 
engine." — W. E. Nicholson, Glossary of Coal TradeTerms, 1888. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 267 

ENGINE-SEAM, the name of a seam of coal on Tyneside. 
In 1649 Gray wrote : ** Master Beaumont, a gentleman of 
great ingenuity and rare parts, adventured into our mines, 
who brought with him many rare engines not known then in 
these parts." The memory of these " rare engines*' survives 
in the name of the seam which he appears to have discovered, 
still called the engine seam or " Beaumont.'* 

ENOO, YENOO, shortly, anon. " Aa*ll be there yenoor 

ENTRY, a passage way ; a narrow lane, like a chare. There 
were in Newcastle, formerly, the Bakers* Entry^ doggers' 
Entry, Fenwick's Entry, Mackford's Entry, Joint Stock Entry, 
Dowie's Entry, Mill Entry, Johnson's Etttry, Wrangham's 
Entry, Spencer's Entry, Scott's Entry, Wood Entry, White- 
boar Entry, &c. In Newcastle the word is pronounced as a 
trisyllable — en-ter-ee. The narrow lanes in the suburb of 
Sandgate were nearly all called entries, whilst those on the 
Quayside were generally known as chares. The passage- 
way of a house. " Leave yor dorty shoes i' the entry " — leave 
them in the passage. 

" Such sighs and soft wishes, from lads and from lasses, 
Who tell their fond tales at an entry -end.."' 

W. Stephenson, senr., Newca^stle on Saturday Night. 

EQUAL-AQUAL, equally balanced. 

ERDSREW, ARD-SREW, the common shrew mouse. 

ERLES, earnest money ; pronounced arles, which see. 

ESH, the ash-tree, Fraxinus excelsior. " An even esh " is an ash 
leaf in which the terminal leaflet is wanting, and the pairs of 
leaflets are consequently even. It is considered as lucky to 
find an " even esh'' as to find a four-leaved clover. 

ESK, a newt. See Ask. 

ESP, the aspen tree, Populus tremula, or trembling poplar. 

ESS, ashes. See Ass. 

ESS-HWOLE, an ash bin. 

ESTOVER, a hedge stake. Compare Stower. 

ETHER, EDDER, an adder. In Northumberland the dragon- 
fly is called " bull etJier,'* or ^'fleein ether,'' flying adder. 



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268 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

ETHER, NETHER, to blast, as by frost or cold wind. See 

Nether. 

ETHERISH, keen, cold, biting. " It's an etherish mornin'." 

ETTIN, or YETUN, a boggle. 

"The peple ther say that ther dwelled yn it one Yotun, whom they 
fable to nave been a Gygant." — Leyland, on Corbridge, Itinerary, third 
edition, vol. v. 

ETTLE, to intend, to endeavour, to foresee, to contrive by 
forethought, and, so, to appoint, to arrange ; always meaning 
some action that has been thought out beforehand. ** Aa'll 
ettle to be there, noo, if I can.'* 

" A galvanic machine 'at aa ettled to myek mesel." — Geordy's Last^ 
1878, p. 10. 

ETTLEMENT, intention. That which is set aside or 
intended for one. 

EVENDOON, straight down, straightforwardly, An evendoon 
rain is a steady downpour. Evendoon thump is a blunt, 
straightforward statement. 

EWE-DAISY, the plant Potentilla tormentilla. Known also as 
shepherd^ 5 knot, fiesh-and-hlood, or blood-root. 

EWE-DYKE. See Ewe-hung. 

EWE-GOWAN, or EWE-GOLLAN. 

•• The Daisy in North Tindale. Gowan is any flower of a golden 
colour, and then figuratively a flower." — Hodgson's MS. 

I 
EWE-HUNG, a dyke set with hazel or willow bows on the 
top, to keep sheep from leaping over ; or a row of short stakes 
stuck in a sod hedge with a rope drawn along their tops 
through a hole in each. — Hodgson's MS. 

EWER, an udder, 

EXCLAMATIONS. Most of these are nowadays used without 
any thought whatever of their original meaning. They are 
spoken as **idle words"; but some of them enter so frequently 
into the common speech that to omit them would be to leave 
a blank in the collection of Northumberland words. Aa's 
coxed ! Aa's goxed ! Ad smash ! Aehy ! Assay ! Ay-di- 
me ! Baa ! Baa sang ! Bi blist I Bi cavers ! Bi crike! 
Bi crikey ! Bi gell I Bi gocks ! Bi golly ! Bi gum ! Bi jing ! 
Bi jinks ! Bi maa truly 1 Bi maa jinkers ! Bi me sowl I 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 269 

Bi the gowky I Bliss me ! Bliss us ! Blou ma rags ! Blou 
ye I Boodyankers ! Boozy Nick ! Buzzy ! By eye ! By 
Goshen! Carties! Crike! Crikes! Crikey! Dal! Dang! 
Dang it! Dash! Dash me wig! Dash me buttons ! Dearie 
me! Dearknaas! Deed! De'ilbin! De'il fetch't ! De'il 
ken ! De'il me ken ! De*il rive thor sark ! De'il scart ye ! 
De'il smash ! De*il stop out tha een ! Deuce tyek ye I 
Deums ! Di bon ! Di me rattle ! Ding ! Dod ! Dool ! 
Drab it ! Eee ! Egocks ! Eh ! Eh what a ! Eh wow ! 
Eigh wye ! Faiks ! For-a-sykes ! Gad smash ! Gad smash 
me sark ! Gan ti Hecklebarny ! Geh ! Get oot ! Get away ! 
Geud deed ! Go ! Go bon ! Go cab maa lug ! God geyhd 
us ! God's wuns ! Go set ! Gosh cab I Gox ! Hadaway ! 
Heigh how I Hinny how ! Hoot ! Houts ! How ! How 
marra! How there! I'faiks! I'faikins! Kaa! Kid away 
man ! Kiver awav ! Leuk a day ! Lilly lends ! Lilly wuns ! 
Lilly wunters ! Loaky me I Losh ! Losh a daisy ! Losh 
man ! Losh marcy ! Losh me ! Lucka ! Lucksta ! Luck 
ye, see ye ! Maa ! Maa carties ! Maa conscience ! Maa 
faith ! Maa patience ! Maa sang ! Maa santies ! Manalive 1 
Marcy on us ! My Joes ! Od ! Od bin ye ! Od dal ! Od 
man! Odool! Od'sbobs! Od'sfish! Od*s heft ! Od's 
marcy ! Od smash ! Od smon the' ! Od swell ye ! Od 
swite ! Od's wunners ! Od's wunnerful ! Od zounds ! 
Sankers ! Sarties ! Seesta ! See ye ! Shem a ma ! Shem bin 
ye ! Sink ! Sink me ! Sink me heart ! Sink me sowl ! Smash ! 
Smash man ! Smash marra ! Smash me ! Smash me crop ! 
Smash me hoggers ! Smash me sark ! Syeks man ! Sykes 
alive ! Ye boozy alley ! Wae's me ! Wally ! Weelet o* the 
fellow ! Well aa nivvor ! Welladay ! Wellaway ! What 
cheer! Wow! Wuks! Wuns! Wuntersful! Wye, wye! 
Ye buzzy ! Ye buzzy-alley ! Zoons ! 

In the foregoing it will be seen that Od and Dod are thin 
disguises. It is not so apparent that gosh, gox, golly, gocks and 
cocks are also corruptions of the same name. But such is the 
case, as the oath in Hamlet — ** By cocke they are to blame " — 
shows us. It is yet more difficult to see how these words have 
acquired the verbal form " to be goxed," or " to be coxed." 
The oath ** Boodyankers " is ingeniously suggested to be 
** body and croix " (or cross) ; and " sankers" is also said to be 
a disguised form of saint croix (holy cross), "Crike" and 
" Crikey " are a veiled form of Christ. ** Smash " may also 
be mess, or ** by the mass," and "Ad smash," or " Od smash," 
would thus mean "God's Mass." "Baa Sang" may 
similarly mean, "by the Sangrail" — that is, by the holy dish. 
The Saviour's passion is referred to in the " Od swite," or 



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270 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

God*s sweat, and the "crucifixion" in ** Wuns," **Od zounds," 
" Od*s wunners,** and " Wuntersful," meaning God*s wounds. 
Many of these references it will be seen pass into grotesque 
and meaningless variations, but it is noteworthy that these 
formerly pious expressions greatly prevail over invocations 
a diabolic kind. Finally, every one of the expressions of 
given in this list is from recorded usage in the county of 
Northumberland. 

EYE, the orifice in a pick ; the hole in a grindstone; the opening 
at a water-mill through which the water is delivered over 
the wheel ; the discharge hole in a lime-kiln ; the orifice in 
the casing of millstones through which the Hour passes ; the 
mouth of a well. See Eee. 

EYEN, the eyes. In common use as late as 1824, now scarce. 
See Een. 



FA' AND FA' ABOUT, the portions of the holders in a 
'* field" under the old system of tillage, in which the strips, 
called fallsy were said to lie fa' and fa' about, that is, in 
alternating order. Compare Ather, 6aak, Cable, Cavel, 
Rig 2. 

FAA, the common name for a Gipsy or a vagabond, " vagrom 
man." Itinerant tinkers, besom makers, muggers, and such 
like, were known as FaaSy after the gipsy tribe of that name. 
The name in Newcastle expresses contempt, and in a street 
brawl, " Get oot, ye clarty Faa,'' sums up the measure of a 
woman's scorn for her adversary. See Cramer, Mugger, 
and Tinkler. 

" The place was a common receptacle for all kinds of vagrants, called 
' Faas • (Faws)."— Thos. Wilson, note to The Oilin' 0' Dicky's Wig, 1825. 

*' A Faw gang is a general name in Northumberland for all sorts of 
wandering people." — Hodgson, Northumberland, pt. ij., vol. i., p. loi., 
note. 

FAA FA AL. to fall ; /. faad, p.p. faan. *• Did ye faa ? " " Yis, 
aa faad clean doon, an' aa felt nowt till efter aa'd faan.'* To 
faa-oot is to fall out, to quarrel, 

FAAD, a fold yard. See also Cortin. 

FAAD, a fold for sheep or cattle. " Msiuy-faads," manifolds, a 
kind of tripe. 

FAAIN. FAWIN, FOWIN, folding ; the act of folding the 
sheep. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 27I 

FAC AS DEETH, true as death. A very common expression. 

FACE, the end of the coal working ; the solid coal at which the 
hewers work. See Feyace. 

FACE-AIRING, the current (of air) passed round the face or 
extremity of the workings. — W. E. Nicholson, Gloss, of Coal 
Trade Terms, 1888. 

FACING, a cleat ; the vertical joint or cleavage of a stratum. 

FAD. See Faad. 

FAD, a bundle. A "bottle" is as much hay or straw bound 
together with a rope as a man can conveniently carry on his 
back. A fady or faud, is a lesser quantity, such as can be 
conveniently carried under the arm or in the hand. 

'* The boggle called the Hedley Kow would sometimes appear like a 
fad, or truss of straw, lying in the road." — S. Oliver, Rambles in 
Northumberland, 1835, p. 99. 

" Aw thowt aboot the fad 6* straa 
That Mick gae te wor Dolly." 

•• The Keelman*s Reasons for Attending Church/* 
Allan's Collection, 1863, p. 177. 

FAD, a hobby, a whimsical fancy. 

FADDER, FETHER, FAITHER, father. 

»• I am a pilgrym, als alle my faders was." 

Hampole. Pricke 0/ Conscience. — Morris, line 1386. 

FADDY, finicking, over-particular, bothersome, like one in 
dotage. ** He's a varry faddy body.*' 

FADGE, a bundle of sticks, a faggot. — Brockett. 

FADGE, a small loaf of bread. Generally the little cake or 
loaf made up from a bit of dough left over from a baking. It 
is not baked in a bread tin. Near the Border, difadge is an 
oval bannock, or scone, about two or three inches thick; 
made of pease meal, often with an admixture of bean meal, 
and fired very hard on a ** girdle." 

FADGE, to eat together. At Warkworth, " at the season of 
the New Year there is pro\dded a rich cake with its usual 
accompaniment of wine. Great interchange of visiting takes 
place. It is called ^fadging,' or * eating fadge.' Fadging 
really means eating the bread of brotherly union and concord. 



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272 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

* Come and fadge with me ' is as much as saying * Come and 
break bread with me and taste wine, in token that bygones 
shall be bygones.*" — The Rev. J. W. Dunn, on Warkworth, 
History of Berwickshire Naturalists* Cluh^ 1863, vol. v., p. 56. 

FADGY, a thick-set, fat little man. 

FADGYAN, a very fat child. It is spoken as Fadgy Ann. 

FADOM, FATHOM, a fathom, an arm's stretch, or six feet. 
A huge ash tree having ten trunks, ** each more than I can 
fathom " — that is, stretch round. (Raine's Life of Hodgson^ 
vol. i., p. 65.) A fathom of rope is measured off by seizing 
the end in tihe right hand and passing it through the left 
across the chest. The stretch by an average man is six feet, 
and ropes are in this way measured off most rapidly and with 
great accuracy. Like the "foot," the "hand," and the inch 
(French pouce, a thumb's breadth), standard measures of 
length, the f adorn is a part of the natural man. 

FADOM, FADDOM, a proper use or feeling. "I hae ne 
faddom i* my legs. 

FAFF, fallow land. 

FAFFLE, to stutter, or stammer ; to saunter ; to trifle ; to 
fumble.— HaWie/^/rs Diet. Brockett adds, " to faddUr 

FAG, the fresh water fish, the loach. Colitis barbatula, 

FAGGIT, a term of contempt. " Ye impitent faggit" 

FAHREN, the pronunciation of the word Fame in Fame Islands 
and in Lindisfarne. The a soft as in Fair-en, " Fairen 
Islands." The word fern is also pronounced in the same 
manner. 

FAIKES, an exclamation, meaning "i* faith 1" See Faix. 

FAIL, soil or turf as used in the North in a fail dyke. Perhaps 
it may originally have had the same origin as vail, a sod 
wall ; and it is remarkable that the great German Wall, from 
the Danube to the Rhine, was called the Pfahl or Stakes, 
from the materials that composed it. — Hodgson MS. 

'* In behint yon auld/fli7 dyke, 
I wot there lies a new-slain knight.'* 

The Twa CorbUs. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 273 

FAIR, FOR FAIR, or FOR FAIRS, in reality, in earnest— 
$.e.t seriously, in opposition to jocosely, playfully. ** Nyen o' 
yor shamin ; gan on for fairs this time I" 

*' Aw myest could wish, for his dear sake, 
That aw'd been drowned /or /air." 

R. Gilchrist, d. 1844, BoldArchy. 

'* That's nobbut lees ; come, speak for fairs.** 

Ed. Corvan, Bull Dog 0' Shields, 1853. 

FAIR, FAIRIN, a present from a fair. " What '11 ye buy is 
for me fair ?" ** If ye gan, bring*z a fairin hyem, mind !" 

FAIR, quite. See Fairly. 

"Aa's /air sick o' love." 

J. P. Robson. Sang o' Solomon, 
Northumberland version, ch. v., p. 8. 

FAIR, exactly, straight. " He hit h\m fair on the heed." " Fair 
i' the middle." 

FAIR-DAYS, the goose grass, Potentilla anserina. 

FAIR-FALL-YOU, fair befall you; a common benediction — a 
blessing attend you. — Brockett. 

FAIRLY, used to express the sense of quite, or thoroughly. 
"Ye can see the poor beast is fairly deun." <*Sair deun " 
means very much done ; but **fair deun '* means completely 
done. See Fair, 2. 

" ' Fairly on to the bottom,' is a call from banksman to brakesman to 
lower the cage in a pit gently on to the bottom." — W. E. Nicholson, 
Coal Trade Glossary, 1888. 

FAIRNEY-TICKLES, or FARNEY-TICKLES, freckles on 
the face or hands. 

FAIRY. The superstitions concerning fairies still linger in 
such names as follow : — 

Fairy-butter, a fungous excrescence, sometimes found about 
the roots of old trees, or a species of tremeliay found on furze 
and broom. — HalliwelVs Dictionary. When found in houses it 
is reckoned lucky. — Brockett, 

Fairy-lint, fairy flax, Linum catharticuni. 

Fairy-money, treasure-trove ; also the seed spores of a cup- 
shaped fungus. 

Fairy-pipes, small old tobacco pipes. Some of these have 
been made to hold a piece of tobacco, or other narcotic, about 
the size of a pill. See Pipe-stopple. 

R 



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274 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

Fairy-ringSf the circular windings of the spawn or roots of 
mushrooms, or some other fungi. — Hodgson's MS. Fairy rings 
are connected in some way with the special mode of growth 
of Agaricus orcadcs and A . gambosus. The green " sour grass" is 
not, however, always in a circle, for it may be sometimes seen 
running in a wavy line, interrupted irregularly. — ^Johnston, 
Botany of the Eastern Borders, p. 273. 

Fairy 'tickles t freckles. See Fairney-tickles. 

FAITHOR, FATHOR, FETHOR, FADDER, father. 

FAKISH, FAKED-UP, dressed up, made up. 

FALL. See Faa. 

FALL, the falling down of the roof or stone in a pit. 

FALL, a rope. A *« block fall,'* or a ** taickle fall,'' is the rope 
for a set of blocks. In a pumping pit Sifall is used for lifting 
portions of the pumping arrangements during repairs. A fall 
is also ** the bucket or clack-/a// in a pump, which opens and 
shuts to allow the passage of water." — Mining Glossary, New- 
castle Terms, 1852, 

FALLS, the division of a large arable field attached to a 
village, — HalliweWs Diet. See Fa*-and- fa- about. 

FALSE-BEDDING, oblique lamination in a stratum of stone. 

FALT, fault. This word illustrates a characteristic sound in 
the Northumberland dialect, the a being short, as in the 
a in French a la mode. The words fait, malt, salt, are all 
pronounced thus. The contrast between the short sharp a 
and the au sound, in the speech of the literary dialect, is very 
notable. 

" O base mault, 
Thou did'st the fault, 
And into Tyne thou shalt.'* 

In North Northumberland the / is elided in fatUt and salt, 
and they are spoken fat and sat. Malt retains the /, however. 

FAMILIOUS, adj., family. " A familions complaint." 

FAMISH, FAIMISH, famous. 

The Fell is " quite /a/«tsA for rearin' young bairns." 

T. Wilson, Stanzas on a Line of Intended Road, 1825. 

FAMP, clayey shale. — Hugh Miller, Geology of Otterbum and 
Elsdon. --Geological Survey Memoir, 1887. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 275 

FANCICLE. fanciful, capricious. 

FANCY, variegated, parti -coloured, out of the common. " He's 
gotten 2i fancy neckercher." 

FAND {^,t. oifind)^ found ; p.p, funden (pronounced funnen)^ or 
fund. *• He hadn't funnen'd when aa left the place." ** He 
should a fund it oot bi this time.*' See Fun. 

FANG, to shoot down; to capture. Compare Infangbntheof. 

FAN KIT, stuck hard and fast. In the ballad of Parcy Reed a 
description is given of the treachery of " the fause-hearted 
Haa's," who 

" fixed his sword within the sheath, 

That out again it winna come." 

In this plight he was suddenly attacked by the Croziers ; and 
the story says 

" Brave Parcy raised his /an At/ sword, 
And felled the foremost to the ground.'* 

To fang, is to seize, to gripe, to clutch. 
" Destruction /ffir^ mankind.'* 

Shakspeare, Timon. 

Fangedj or fankit^ is therefore seized, and, so, stuck fast. (Obs.) 

FANNY-GRASS, couch grass, Triticum refens. Called also 
quicken grass and rack. 

FANTOME, or FANTOOM CORN, oats which have the 
shells empty, or so nearly empty that they are blown over the 
tail-board of the ** fanners " in the process of winnowing. 

FARAND, used in composition for advancing towards, or being 
ready. Fighting farand, ready for fighting; farand man^ 
a traveller or itinerant merchant. This usage is probably 
from fare^ to go. Farand also means fashion, manner, and 
countenance, perhaps from faring ; so well or ill- far and, good or 
bad \oo\i\Tig,-^Halliwell's Diet. (Obs.) 

*' Farand is used in composition: aa fighting-farand, i.e.t in a fighting 
humour. (See A udfarand.)' ' — Ray's Gloss. 

FARANTLY, orderly, handsome, comely, good-natured, 
respectable, neat. — HalliwelVs Diet. 

** Fair andfarantlyt fair and handsome." 

Ray*s Gloss, 

FARD, or FAURD, favoured. " Ul-fard,'' ** weeUfard "—that 
is, ill-looking or good-looking. 



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Google 



276 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FARDIN, a farthing. ^^ K fardin candle" — the small candle, 
formerly in much use. 

FARDIN-PANT, a fountain, pant, or stand at which water 
was sold for a farthing a skeelful. These were common 
in Newcastle in the times of the early Water Company. 
Edward Corvan absurdly tells us about '*The Phantom 
Skeel ; a tale of a Fardin Pant.*' 

FARE, to near, or approach. 

•*The covr fares a-calving." — Brockett. 

FARL, a term of contempt. ♦• Gid away, ye aad farl /" 

FARL, or FARREL, an ositc^ke— Northumberland.— HalliwelTs 
Diet, Or the fourth part of a round cake, as **3.farl o' short- 
bread." 

FARLEY, a wonder, a strange thing. To **spy farkys" is 
equivalent to seeing strange and wonderful matters in common- 
place things. 

FARM, the pronunciation ol firm. 

FAR-OWER, by much too. '' Far-ower cunnin." "Yor /ar- 
ower late a comin." ** Far-ower far." 

FARRAW, a milch cow not with calf, 

FARREL, the fourth part of a circular oatcake, the division 
being made by a cross." — Halliwcll's Diet. But farrel is simply 
the broad pronunciation of farl. 

FAS AN, a pheasant. Very common. So spoken by old people. 

FASHION, to grow in resemblance. 

" If it fashions like its dad/' 

J. P. Robson, b. 1808, d. 1870, Betty BusUy. 

FASHOUS, troublesome. " Aa've hed a fashous job on't, aa 
can tell ye." 

FASTENS, or EASTERNS EEN, or EVEN, Shrove or Pan- 
cake Tuesday ; the eve of Ash Wednesday, on which begins 
the Lenten fast. See Pancake-Tuesday. 

FAST-HAUD, the occurrence of ** the * set ' getting oflF the 
road, and the tubs jammed fast (in a pit), or the cage getting 
fast in the shaft." — Nicholson, Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, 1888. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 277 

FAST-TENKIN (in mining), a bordways place driven up the 
middle of a pillar. 

FAST-SIDE, the side next the solid coal. 

FAST-SHOT, a charge of powder exploded in a pit without 
the desired effect. Called also stannin bobby. 

FAST- WALL, a sheth wall in a pit ; the wall in which, at the 
top or bottom of an air course, the bearing-up or bearing- 
down stopping is placed. — Grunwell. 

FAT-COAL, an old term for blacksmiths* coal, a caking coal, 
highly bitumenous and free from sulphur. 

FAT-CROWDY, a ** crowdy '* made from the skimming off the 
pot which contained meat and broth. When the pot 
containing the meat and broth for the Sunday's dinner was 
boiling, the upper stratum of water with the fat floating 
thereon was used to mix with the oatmeal of the crowdy, and 
thus called a fat-crowdy* See Crowdy. 

FAT- HEN, the Chenopodium alburn^ a weed, common in richly 
cultivated ground, which is occasionally cooked and eaten. 
It is also known as goose foot ^ muck weed, and miles. Fat-hen is 
also a name in North Northumberland for the Atriplex patula^ L. 

FATTY, a fat person. " What a fatty he is." 

FAURD, favoured, as "weel faurd'' or "ill faurd" — well 
favoured, ill favoured. See Fard. 

FAW. SeeFAA. 

FEADE, an enemy. The word has come down to us in the 
** deedXy feade " of the Border. Compare Feid. 

FEAK, to be restless. See Fyke. 

" And truly, sir, it burnt my leg, 
And garr'd mefeek like Hen with Egg." 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 18. 

**Theyfeak and cannot keep a seat." 

Ed. Chicken, The Collier's Wedding, 1735. 

FEAL, to hide. 

•• He thsit feals can find."— Pwwrfi. 

FEAR, to put in dread, to frighten. 

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278 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FEARDLIKE, frightened, afraid. 

FEARDY, a frightened or terrified person. " He's a fcardy^ 

FEARENTLY, in fear of, afraid of. 

FEARSOME, dreadful-looking. 

FEAT, neat, clever, dexterous, elegant. — HalliwM's Diet. 

FEATHER, the thin side of a plough sock — that is to say, the 
far side from near the point to the "little heen," or heel. 
See also Stook and Feathers. 

FEATHER-FUL, FEATHER-FOOLY, the feverfew, Pyrcih' 
rum parthenium. Feather fool is apparently fever futile. 

FEATLY, neatly, dexterously. 

FECK, FYEK, a quantity, an abundance. He' ye ony feck ?" 
— Have you any quantity of it ? ** Aa he' nee fyek i' me 
hands " — I have no great quantity on hand. 

FECKFUL, resourceful. 

FECKLE, to entSLTigle.—Brockett, third edition. 

FECKLESS, one without resource. "A feckless body" is one 
unable to make any effective effort. A weak or incapable 
person. This word is much more common than its opposite, 
feckful. 

FECKLY, FEEKLY, chiefly, mostly. " It's /?^% his aandein." 

FEDER, father; also FETHER, FITHOR, FADHOR, and 
FADDOR. 

FEE, wages. 

" Ye shall nev'r crave twice ot me 
The smallest penny of your /<?//* 

G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1886, p. 26, 

To this line the Newcastle author adds a marginal note for 
the Southern reader, ''fee — wages." And again, *♦ He pays 
us fee and finds us cleathing," p. 32. 

FEED, to serve in a game. The lad who throws a ball, or 
**cat,*' towards the batter, or striker, in a game is said to 
feed, and he is called the feeder. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 279 

FEEDER, one who " serves " in a game. Also that part of the 
machinery where cereals are fed into a mill. 

FEEDER, a spring, or inrush of water in a pit. 

" All which water we suppose to come from the sea, and so being fed 
by that inexhaustible fountain, we call it by the name of a feeder,*'— 
The CompUat Collier, 1708, p. 25. 

FEEDER-IN, the person -who feeds or supplies a machine with 
material to be worked or dressed. The man who passes in 
corn to a thrashing or to a winnowing machine is thus called. 

FEEDING-STORM, a continuous snowstorm. 

FEEL, to perceive. " Can ye feel a smell ? ** is a very common 
expression. 

FEEL, FEELY, soft, smooth, downy, velvety. 

FEEMY, the Christian name Euphemia. 

FEERY-FARY, a noise, a tumult. *' Feery-fary " is explained 
in the margin of the yoco-Seiions Discourse as ** coil kept.*' 
** Now what needs aw this feery-fary ?'^ p. 12. (Obs.) 

FEG, a fig ; a valueless thing. " *Tisn't worth a feg,*' Also the 
droppings of a donkey. 

FEID, a deadly feud ; the ancient blood feud common on the 
Border in former times. 

FELL, a lofty brown hill ; a mountain, or open, un tilled ground ; 
broad wettish moors covered much with heath, rushes, and 
sparts. — Hodgson MS. Fell enters into combination with 
about fifty-six place-names in Northumberland, and into 
some twenty-eight place-names in Durham county. Examples : 
Carter Fell, Gateshead Fell, Throckley Fell. 

'• The western part of Northumberland was bounded by Norwegian 
settlements in Cumberland and Liddesdale, and most of the names in -fell 
are in the hill country bordering on Cumberland and Scotland." — 
J. V. Gr^ory, Archalogia j^liatM, vol. ix., p. 41. 

FELL, to stun with a blow. 

" We didna want to hurt them, so we just felled them an' flang them 
oot.'* — S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. 156. 



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28o NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FELL, FELLON, sharp, clever, crafty, brave, enduring; 
descriptive of work done under difficulty. *• She's a little fell 
'un " — said in complimenting a servant girl, not robust, who 
had done more than could have been reasonably expected. 
** He'd a fell job on't " — that is, the work took more doing 
than was anticipated. The word is very common. •* A fell 
bit callant " — a brave, enduring little body. 

FELL, to sew down on the inside the edges of two pieces of 
any article sewn together. 

FELLIN, FELLON, an eruption on the skin ; a rash ; a boil ; 
a whitlow. Also a disease in cows. 

FELLY, to plough a ridge towards the " reen *' (rean), in 
contradistinction to gathering up towards the " mid-rig." 

FELTERED, unkempt, shaggy, neglected. 

" It*s hard to say what a raggy lad an' a fettered foal may turn to."— 
Northumberland Proverb. 

FELTY, or FELTY-FARE, the fieldfare, Tutdus pilaris. It is 
called also the fendy and fetidy-farc. 

FEMMER, weak, slight, frail, cranky, tender. " She's nobbut 
femmer^ poor body." •* Mind hoo ye gan ; that brig's nobbut 
femnur.'' 

FENCE, a word in place-names, as Heckley Fence. 

FEND, to struggle in obtaining a livelihood. 

FEND, FEN, a struggle for a livelihood, an attempt at doing 
a thing. Few has much the same meaning. 

" Still, ^ve have myed a diecenX fend. 
And niver fyel'd to pay wor way." 

T. Wilson, The Shifting Day, 1852. 

FEND, to defend, to ward off a blow. Hence the fender used 
on board ship. "Fend off that keel." 

FENDY, resourceful, good at managing. **He's sl fendy body." 
Fensome is used in the same sense. 

FENDY, FEN DF ARE, the fieldfare, Turdus pilaris. See also 
Felty. 

" An abundant winter visitant.'*^ohn Hancock, Birds of Northumber- 
land and Durham. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 281 

FENKLE, a bend, or corner, or elbow, as of a street or river. 
Finchale probably derives its name from the corner or elbow 
of the river on which it is situated. Most of our old towns 
possess a fenkle or corner street. Fenkle streets are found in 
Newcastle, Alnwick, &c. 

FENSOME, resourceful. See Fend, Fendy. 

FERACIOUS, ferocious, dangerous, furious. 

FERLY (pronounced farky)t to wonder, a wonder, wonderfully, 
wonderful, strange. 

FESH, fish. [Holy Island, and the coast generally.] 

FESSEN, to fasten. 

FEST, bound. Fest, or bouAd apprentice. 

FEST, a mooring place. 

" There keelmen, just landed, swear may they be stranded 
If they're not shaved first, while their keel's at the/«/." 

The Quayside Shaver. 
FESTEND, FESSEND, fastened. 

FESTIN-PENNY, the " arles,'* or binding money. 

FETCH, the distance required, by a body put in motion, to 
acquire velocity ; as the waves of the sea acquire a great 
fetch when the wind blows from a far unsheltered direction. 

FETHER, father. It is sometimes fdther (the a short) and 
faithor. See Faitho«, Fader, &c. 

" Feder ajad/ethor are the common Northumbrian ways of speaking the 
Anglo-Saxon word fader, fadther^ ox father.*' — Hodgson's Northumberland, 
iii., 2, p. 353, note. 

FETTLE, to put in order, to sharpen or repair tools, to get 
ready. " The lock wants fettlin:' " Fettle the scythe." 

FETTLE, condition, working order. " What fettle ? " " That 
horse is i' grand fettle. 

FETTLE, ale warmed and spiced. 

FEUS, to turn into fibres, as the head of a chisel does by 
repeated strokes of the hammer. 

FEUSOME, handsome. 



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282 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FEW, an effort, a struggle. "He made a good /won't, any- 
way." " Aa*ll few to be wi' ye the mom." This word is used 
in a similar sense to ftnd^ which see. 

FEW, to show an aptitude. " He's a likely leukin chep ; he 
fews weel." 

FEW, a small quantity, or a number. " Will ye he' a few mair 
broth ?" " A good ftw^' or " a canny few " means a consider- 
able number of people or things. 

FEWSOME, very few. " Thor's oney fewsonie on us the neet.*' 
Not to be confounded with feusome^ although spoken like that 
word. 

FEY. Fie and fay in Halliwell. 

*' The vf ord fey was formerly used both in Scotland and in the North of 
England to express the state of a person who was supposed to be dying, 
but who woula rise from his bed and go about the house, conversing 
with his friends, as if nothing ailed him. Persons also in health, whose 
eyes displayed unusual brightness, and who appeared to act and speak in 
a wild and mysterious manner when preparing for battle or for a perilous 
journey, were frequently said to be 'fey * ; that is. doomed shortly to meet 
with their death." — S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. 108. 

FE-YACE [S], FYEACE, FYES [T], the face. 

" His^« as white as ony cloot, 
Ses aw, • What he ye been aboot ?' " 

Song, As Aw Wis Gannin Oot Yen Neet. 

In a pit the face is the wall of coal at which the hewer works- 
See Fyes. 

FEYACY, FACY, impudent, shame-faced. 

FEYACY-GATE, a brazen-faced person. 

FEYEL [S] , FYEL [T] , to fail. " To want a frien' when 
natur fyels*' 

FEYUL [S] , FYUL [T] , a fool. Often spelt /««/. 

FIB, to finish. 

FICKLE, to puzzle, to do something which others cannot do. 
Fickly, puzzling. 

FIDGE, to fidget, to worry, to be anxious. "To fidge and 
fyke " is to be restless and uneasy. ** Fidgin fain *' is being 
worried and anxious about a thing. 

FIDGY, fidgetty. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 283 

FIE, predestined. See Fey. 

FIE, shortened form ot signify. " VJhditfies taakin' ?" 

FIELD, a division of land consisting of many separate holdings, 
grouped together in the ancient system of cultivation for the 
purpose of a rotation of crops. The hedged rectangles which 
are now familiar to us as our fields are the result of Commons 
Enclosure Acts. For terms formerly used see Ather, Baak, 
Cable, Gable, Kyevel, Fall, Rean, Rig, Butts, Acre-dale- 
lands, Husband-lands, Dyel, Scribe, Ten, Sheth, Gore, 
SwiN. 

FIELD-LARK, the tree pipit, Anthus arhoreus, 

FIELD Y, or FIELD-SPARROW, the hedge-sparrow, Prunella 
modularis. Called also smohey, Hedgy and hluey are also names 
by which this bird is known. The fieldfare is also known as 
fieldy in some parts of South Northumberland. 

FIERY, applied to a coal-pit where gas is given off in dangerous 
quantity. 

FIERY-HEAP, a heap into which the small or duff coals of 
Northumberland were formerly teemed and burnt. — Gloss, of 
Coal Trade Terms, 1888. 

" The deposit of rubbish and waste or unsaleable coal which usually 
takes fire spontaneously.'* — Greenwell. 

FIFT, fifth. 

" Here begyhs the fifte part."— PnVA# of Conscience^ a.d. 1349. 

FIGHTING.COCKS,orFIGHTEE.COCKS, the stems and 
flower heads of Plantago lanceolata (Linn,), or lamb's tongue, 
used by children in a game which tries the endurance of a 
cock, or ** kemp," as it is called. Each combatant is provided 
with an equal number of stalks and heads (**kemps"), and 
holds out one to be struck by the opponent. If it is 
decapitated by the blow the player gives his return stroke 
with a fresh ** kemp " ; but if it survives the blow it is used 
in return. The play is thus kept up alternately until one of 
the players has lost all his heads. The victor then counts his 
survivors — or, as is usually the case, he is left with one only 
to mark his conquest in the game. See Kemps. 

FIKE, to be very fidgetty ; to move in an unconstant, 
undeterminate manner; to go about idly. — HalliweWs Diet, 
Fikes, restlessness, trifling caies. See Fidge. 

" To have the fikes.''^Brocfiett. 

'*Fihy, fidgetty, itchy, minutely troublesome.'* — Brjckett. 



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284 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FILE, to make foul. The ^'file in the foot " is a disease peculiar 
to cattle and sheep. 

FILLERS, men employed in filling the loose coals where 
separate holers or kirvers and getters and fillers are 
employed. — Glossary of Cod Trade Terms^ 1888. 

FILLETS, the hollow between a horse's ribs and haunch bones. 

FILLINGS, infiltrations of water. 

" A sump (or "well to a coal-pit) to hold the drawings (or filings, as vre 
call them here) of water, whether rain or otherwise." — J.C, CompUat 
Collier, 1708, p. 14. 

FILLY-FAIR, a concourse of young girls. 

FILLY-FWOAL, a young mare while sucking. The young 
horse of the same age is a cout-fwoal, 

FILLY-NAIL, a nail ijin. long by about j^in. thick in the 
stalk, having a large square head about i in. across and made 
rj^in. thick. These nails were specially made in former times 
jfor warships, to cover the bottoms before sheathing of other 
metal had been introduced. They were made by superannuated 
nailors incapable of heavier work. 

FILLY-TAILS, clouds of cirrus kind, long trailing white 
clouds. 

FIN, to find. V^henfind is used, it is always pronounced with 
the i short, as in window {p.t. fand; p,p. fund). ** Aa couldn't 
Jin' oot what ailed it." 

FIN, to feel. " It's that dark, aa'U he* to/in' for the sneck." 
" Just/« me hands, hoo caud th'or." 

FINDY-FEE, the fee or reward paid to the finder of anything 
lost. 

FINDY-KEEPY, who finds keeps. A formula repeated by 
children when searching for any lost thing, its utterance 
giving the finder the right to keep the article. The form is 
sometimes extended, as ** Lossy, steky, findy, hcepy" 

FINE, quite well, pleasant. " Hoo are ye thi day ?" " O, lad, 
aa's/w." 

FINGER. This is invariably pronounced fing-or^ not, as 
modern use has it, fin-gcr. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 285 

FINGER-HAT, a finger-stool. Compare Hand-hat. 

FINOODLE, to fumble. *' What's ihoo finoodlin there at ? " 

FIPPLE, the under Up, a pet lip, a wry face. "What a 
fippUV^ — What a face you're making, A person is said to 
** hang his fipple '* when he looks sulky or discontented. After 
stooks of corn remain standing for a time, the bottoms of the 
sheaves become naturally longer on the outside than the 
inside, which is called their /Ipple. 

FIRE, to explode. A pit is said to have fired when an explosion 
of gas has taken place. 

FIRE, to throw. The phrase **fire away" is equivalent to the 
colloquial ** go ahead." 

" They fired styens at him." 

*' Pitman's Ghost.'* 
Bards of the Tyne, 1849, p. 409. 

FIRE, or WILD FIRE, sheet lightning. "Did ye see 
hoo the fire wis fleein last neet ? " Fire-&a,ught, lightning. 

FIRE-CLAY, deposits of more or less silicious clay known as 
under-clay, seggar-clay, or thill, and often usedsis fire-clay. — 
Professor Lebour, Geology of Northumberland and Durham, 1886, 
P-45- 

FIRE-COAL, coal supplied to workmen (at a colliery) for 
domestic purposes, free of charge, except sixpence per 
fortnight for leading, which is done by the colliery carts, 
within a reasonable distance. — Glossary of Coal Trade Terms, 
1888. 

FIRE-ENGINE, the term formerly applied to the steam 
engine, distinguishing it from a ** horse engine," or **gin." 

"The charge of "water was calculated as if to be drawn by horses, 
whereas now it may be done much cheaper by help oi^ fire-engine.'* — 
Affidavit re Walker Colliery, 1722. — Brand, History of Newcastle^ vol. ij., 
p. 685, note. 

" At Walker Colliery there are two ventilators worked with a machine 
by the help of the fire-engine. This machine is also applied to turn a 
wheel for raising coals." — Wallis, Histoty of Northumberland, 1767, vol. i., 
p. 128. 

FIRE-FLOUT, the common poppy, Papaver rhceas. Also 
called stinking poppy and lightning. See Cockens. 

FIRE-LAMP, a portable fire used as a lamp. 

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286 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FIRE-STEED, a fireplace. 

FIRE-STONE, a silicious sandstone, formerly used as furnace 
linings. 

FIRST, until, hence, following. 

"Till you have occasion, which I hope will not be long /rs/." — ^J.C, 
Compieat Collier, 1708, p. 31. 

FIRST-CALLER, the time when the caller goes round to call 
the fore-shift men. — Glossary of Coal Trade Tcmns^ 1888. 

FIRST-FOOT, the first who crosses the threshold after mid- 
night on New Year's Eve. The person so doing must on no 
account enter empty handed, and a present to the house even 
of a piece of coal or a piece of loaf will qualify the first- footer. 
The entrant, to be lucky, must be of the male sex. If he have a 
squint, he brings bad luck. If he be of dark complexion, he 
is not a desirable comer. The luckiest is a fair-haired first-foot. 
It is a kindly custom ; and a hearty welcome is always given 
to those who go first-footing on New Year's morning to carry 
from circle to circle the greeting ** A happy New Year." 

••It is unlucky to lend anything whatever on New Year's Day. It is 
unlucky to meet a female first on New Year's Day, or indeed on any day 
of the year. Specially unlucky it is when a woman is yoar first-foot. "— 
W. Brockie, Legends and Superstitions ^ p. no. 



*Aa 



FIRTHLESS, unmethodical, shiftless, extravagant, 
nivver saa sic a firthless creetur." 

FISH, a flat plate of iron or other substance, laid upon another 
to protect it or strengthen it. A ''fish beam " is a composite 
beam, where an iron plate is sandwiched between two wood 
beams. A ''fish joint " is a joint made by bolting or riveting 
a plate on each side near the ends, as in a railway plate. 

FISH, to seek about blindly, or doubtingly. "What are ye 
fishin i' me box for ? " ** Aa'll gan deafish for mesel " — that is, 
endeavour to find something to eat. 

FISH, a tool used for bringing up a bore rod or pump valve. 
See FisH-HEAD. 

FISH-BELLIED, having the bottom part curved like the belly 
of a fish, as a "fish-bellied rail," which was ** bellied " or curved 
between each pair of chairs. 

FISH-FAG, a fishwoman. 

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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 287 

FISH-GARTH, an enclosure made of stakes and wattles for 
trapping fish in a river. See Cruive. 

FISH-HEAD, an implement used for drawing the clack from 
a set of pumps. 

FISSLE, FISSEL, to move about restlessly and with a gentle 
crackling noise. ** What do yoyifissel aboot on the seat for ?** 
" A moose went foselin through amang the stray (straw). " A 
fisselin wund " (wind). It is also applied to the crackling 
noise heard in a pit when the coal fissles^ or crackles, in the 
early stages of creep. — GnsU/s Gloss,, 1883. 

FIT [N.] , FOOT or FUT [T.] , a foot, FiV-sted, a footprint. 

FIT, pJ. of Jigkt. See Fowt. 

FIT, able, capable. ** He's not fit te gan." " Aa's/^ for owt, 
man." •* Fit te loup a yett or stile." 

FIT, to sell and load coals. 

" None shall fitt any keel or keeles of anie other brother without the 
consent of the owner thereof.''— OrcUr of Hostmen's Company , January, 
1 600- 1. — Brand, History of Newcastle t vol. li., p. 272, note, 

FITCH, to shift (without a felonious intention). " Fitch that 
flake " — remove that hurdle. 

FITCHEL, a beam or shaft of a waggon. The fitchel bolt is 
that which goes down through the block and holds it to the 
bearings, or vice vers^. 

FITTAGE, the commission allowed to a coal shipper. 

FITTEN, p.p. of fight. 

•* When we had fadrlyfitien ouisels clear o* them.'* — S. Oliver, Rambles 
in Northumberland^ 1835, p. 156. 

FITTER, the agent at the shipping port who sells and loads 
the produce of a colliery. Formerly called hosimcn. A 
" running yJ^/^f" is an outdoor messenger. 
** Mourn, a' the fitters o' the Quay I 
And a' the swarms o' Brokers, tee. 
That tell the captains mony a lee, 
To myek them fix ! " 
T. Wilson, A Dirge on the Death of Coaly ^ 1843. 

FITTIN, coal shipping. 

" The faithers o' the/«m-trade 
The Quayside a'ways pacin* " 

T. Wilson, Captains and the Quayside, 



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288 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FIVE QUARTER COAL. The " quarter" here is a quarter 
of a yard. Five quarters, therefore, = 3 feet 9 inches — ^this 
being the average thickness of the particular seam. 

*' Which is of about that thickness of five quarters, and that is in some 
collieries very fine." — The Compieat Collier, 1708. 

FIX-FAX, the great white tendon of the necks of animals.— 
Hodgson MS. 

FIZ-BALL, a ball of damp gunpowder kneaded into the form of 
a cone. It is lighted at the apex, and burns with a hissing 
noise. 

FIZ-BALL, FUSS-BA\ the fungus {Lycoperdon bovista, Linn.) 
found in pastures. When dry the pores can be squeezed out 
like a cloud of smoke. Also called puff-baa's, deviVs snuffboxes, 
and blind-man's-buff. 

FIZZER, a cake, with rich kneading, baked on the girdle. 
** A si^xcQ fizzer*' is a girdle-cake (singing-hinny) with currants 
(spice). Anything super-excellent is styled ^fizzer. 

FIZZERT, a term of reproach. ** Ye didLtty fizzert:' 

TIZZY, anything well or cleverly done. "Thafs/^zy, noo!" 
It is used as the colloquial nobby is used. ** That's a fizzy 
coat he hes on." 

FLAA, flaw. Draa, laa, &c., are all similarly pronounced, the 
aw becoming a very long a. 

FLAA, turf for fuel. Compare Flag. 

FLACKER, to flutter, to vibrate like the wings of a bird. 
Compare Flaffer. 

FLACKET, a flask. (Obs.) 

*' A score facketts of stone and glass." — Inventory, 1577. 

FLAFF, to flutter ; same as fiaffer. ** Had yor skemy oot an* 
myek him flaffhis wings." Boys, in luring pigeons, /flj^ their 
caps to imitate a fluttering bird. A flag on a staff is said to 
flaffin the wind. 

FLAFFER, to flutter, to move with an awkward rustling 
motion. 

" li flaffered oot at neets, man.'*— R. Emery, d. 1871, The Owl. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 289 

FLAG, a flake of sandstone used as a roofing tile ; sometiraes 
called a " Northumberland ^j^." Or a flake of sod used for 
the same purpose. ** The j^ags '* is the common name for the 
side-walk of a street when paved with flat stones. A ^g is 
also a snow-flake. **What big flags is comin' doon." A 
banner is not called B.Jlag in Northumberland, but invariably 
" a colour." Water flag is the name for the Iris pseudacoris. 
See Seg. 

FLAGON, a tin water-can ; still known in places as a, flagon. 

FLAG-POST, sandstone suitable for splitting into flags for the 
pavement or for roof tiles. 

FLAID, afraid, frightened, terrified. ''He's flaid te deeth." 
See Flay. 

FLAIK, a space allotted for a stall in a market-place. So 
denominated to this day by the fishwomen in Newcastle. A 
Jiaik, or fleakf is a hurdle, especially a wattled hurdle, and 
thus applied to a space hurdled, or divided, or set apart. See 
Fleak. 

" Aw've had acjlaik in this market thur sixty year.** — Old Dolly Simpson. 
Brockettt ed. 1846. 

FLAIL. The Northumberland y?fli7 consists of a ^'handstaff"," 
3ft. gin. to 4ft. long, having a smooth eye in the end. Through 
this eye, and through a loop of cow-hide lashed to the end of 
a moveable arm, passes a leather **couplin." The moveable 
arm is 3ft. long, and is called the "swingle" or ** soople." 
The loop of cow-hide is called the ** heudin," and its lashing 
is held by being passed through two holes in the end. The 
•♦handstaff"" is of ash, peeled smooth. The "soople" is 
made of any tough wood, having the bark left on. Flails are 
generally kept above a cow in the byre, the notion being that 
they are thereby toughened. 

FLAM, a heavy fall; a lie. See P'lum. 

FLAME-STONE, the stone screen in front of a blacksmith's 
hearth to protect the smith's face from the heat of the fire. 

FLAMMY, or FLAMMIN, to praise, pet, or coddle. 

FLANG, flung, ^.^ of fling. 



s 



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290 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FLANK-HOLE, in mining, a bore-hole made from the side of 
a place where there is a danger of holing into old workings 
which may contain accumulations of gas or water. — W. E. 
Nicholson, Glossary of Coal Trade Tcmis^ 1888. Also a hole put 
in the flank or side of a drift to widen it by putting in a shot-— 
GreenwelL 

FLANNEN, flannel. 

FLAP, anything that hangs broad and loose, fastened only by 
one side. — Todd. A manhole door in a pit. A *'/a/-ower- 
tyeble " is a table with a folding leaf. 

FLAP an unstable person. A young giddy girl is called a flap^ 
or a woman or girl who does not settle down to her domestic 
duties, but goes gadding about, and is generally one of 
slatternly habits. 

FLAP, a sharp blow. ** He hadn't his lessons off; so he gat 
his flaps at skyul." 



FLAP, to strike down quickly. 

QC 

T. Wilson, Pitman*s Pay, pt. ii., v. 76. 



" Flap her doon at once wi* pouther." 
T. Wilson '^■' 



FLAPPER, a heavy, resounding fall ; or the noise of a heavy 
fall. 

FLAPPER, a flat piece of leather on a stick, used by butchers 
for killing flies. 

FLAPPY, uneven, unsteady. " The carpet's lyin* SiMflappy" 

FLARE-UP, a quarrel, usually applied to a domestic broil. 
Also a rout or entertainment. • 

FLASH, the small globules of molten iron which drop from the 
blacksmith's anvil during the process of welding and become 
concretionary. Flash is not to be confounded with " scale." 
Compare Smiddy Gum. 

FL ASS, a shallow, marshy pond ; swampy ground. 

FLAT, the part of a screen at a pit where the coals rest, and 
are cleaned before being put into the waggon. — Glossary of 
Coal Trade Terms, 1888. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 29I 

FLAT, the termination of the horseway in a pit, the coals being 
brought thereto by the putters. — Mining Glossary, Newcastle 
Terms, 1852. It is also called a *' station." See' Crane. 

" The lateral extension of a lead vein."— Professor G. A. Lebour, M. A., 
Geology of Northumb:rland and Durham ^ second edition, 1886, p. 62. 

FLATCH, to flatten by expansion. 

FLAT-LAD, the lad at the flats or crane in a pit. See 
Craneman. 

FLATLINS, flatly. 

FLAT-SHEETS, smooth iron plates laid over an even floor at 
a pit bank, on which the tubs are run to be emptied or 
returned to the cage. Flat-sheets are also laid at the foot of a 
shaft where the tubs are run between the cages and the end 
of the tram lines, or in the workings at crossings or junctions 
of the lines of rail. See Settle Boards. 

FLATTY, a flatfish. See Fleuckor, Flucker, &c. 

FLAUGHTER, the thin turf turned up when ground is pared. — 
Brochett. 

FLAUT, FLOUGHT, a roll of wool cajded ready for 
spinning. — Hodgson MS. 

FLAUTCHING, flattery, hollow praise, false coaxing, pleasure, 
artful wheedling. — Hodgson MS, See Fleech. 

FLAW, a joiner's cut nail or brad. 

FLAY, a fright. 

FLAY, FLEY, to terrify, to frighten. 

FLAY [N.], a flea. 
FLAY-CRAA, a scare-crow. 

FLAYSOME, like to frighten, awesome. " The plantin's that 
dark it's resilfliysom" " What a leuk ye he\ aa kit ^ysome 
at ye." 

FLEAK, a long, thin piece of timber or a lath. The use of 
fleaks appears in the weiring of rivers. Flakes also were laths 
adapted to lay barley cakes upon. Barley cakes were first 



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292 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

baked on the "gairdel," then they were toasted before the 
fire, being placed on the " bake-sticks " ; afterwards they were 
laid on the flakes to dry. The forms are 2\so flake ^ flaik^ and 
fleek. 

"A gate to set up in a gap. This word fleak signifies the same as 
hurdle, and is made of hasel, or other wands."— Ray, Collection of North- 
Country Words, 1691. 

"The remains of this mill and ihefleaks may still be seen in the Wear 
at Finchale. The /leaks are large, rudely-shaped oak trees, fastened down 
in the water with iron cramps, hurdle-wise. In later times Ajleak was a 
hurdle, suspended horizontally, a foot or two from the top of a room. It 
generally bears the cheese, bacon, &c., of the household." — Rev. James 
Raine, junr. — Archaologia ^liana, vol. i., p. 202, note. 

FLEAM, phlegm. 

FLEASTER, a fluster, a hurry-scurry. " What are ye gettin' 
into sic Sifleaster for ? " 

FLEA-WOOD, the bog myrtle, or sweet gale, Myrica gale. A 
housewife's cure for fleas. 

FLECK, or FLICK, a flitch of bacon. 

FLEGDER, FLEDGY, a fledgling, an immature person, a 
child. See Fleg. 

FLEE, to fly as a bird. 

" Flock o* flock o' wild geese— where di yejlee? 
Fre Howdon to Bowden — to Newcassel Quay." 

Old Rhyme. 

FLEE, a fly. *' Let thatyfe^ stick to the waall" {proverb)— 
**Let that matter rest." Halliwell gWesfleg as Northumber- 
land for a fly. See Fleg. 

FLEE-BY-THE-SKY, a romantic or visionary person. 

FLEECH, FLAUTCH, to flatter, to wheedle. " Aa wadna 
gan ti church wi' him for a* his fleechin" 

" That fleetching knave."— G. Stuart, Joco-Serious Discourse, 1686, p. 64. 

FLEECHY, a flattering humbug. 

FLEECY, laminated. Anything lying in leats, or thin, compact 
layers, like pastry, or the flakes of fish, is said to he fleecy, 

FLEEIN-ETHER, the dragon fly. 

•* Probably called adder (ether) because in a winged state they rise out 
of stagnant and putrid waters, and are constantly found hunting after 
other flies in damp meadows." — Hodgson MS. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 293 

FLEET, a fishing place. It occurs in the ancient spellings, as 
flete amd /let in place-names, and is applied to salmon fishings 
within the tidal flow. (Obs.) Compare Stell, Yare, Wear. 

FLEET, a row of floating herring nets at sea attached to each 
other and to the fishing boat. 

FLEET, to stop hauling so as to adjust the rope or chain. 
To ^^ fleet the rope" or ** fleet the crab," is by gripping and 
holding the rope to adjust the coil on the crab. In hauling 
up a vessel on a slipway the slip is held by the pauls till the 
hauling chain is fleeted y by removing successive links and 
readjusting the shortened length for another haul. 

FLEET, to float, a fisherman's term. 

FLEETERIN, FLETERIN, falling lightly. '' IVs fleterin on 
o' snaa." 

FLEG, to be furnished with feathers. " Flegged and flown," 
said of young birds that have left their nest. See Fligged. 

FLERDS, showy or gaudy articles of women's dress. 

FLESH-AND-BLOOD, the plant sometimes known as 
shepherd's knot and blood-root {Potentilla tormentilla), 

FLESH-AND-KAIL, a name given to the religious persuasion 
otherwise known as Glassites or Sandemanians. The meeting- 
house of the persuasion in Newcastle was formerly on the 
town-wall, near the New Road, and was known as ** The 
Flesh-and'kail Meeting-house," from the custom observed by 
the members of the church of dining together on Sunday 
morning after service. See Glassite. 

FLEUCKER [S.] , FLUCKER [T.] , also FLUKE, FLUCK, 
or JENNY-FLUCKER, a flounder. 

FLEYED [N.] , flew. ** Aw catch'd a burred, but it gat oot o' 
ma hand am* fleyed away." 

FLICKER, to flutter. See Flacker. 

FLIGARISHON, a lively meeting, such as a wedding party. 
Probably used jocosely. Compare Garishon. 

FLIGARY, finely dressed. "Ma word, she went doon the 
street quite fligary.*" 



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294 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FLIGGED, or FLIG, fledged. " Hardly fligged ower the 
dowp " — young, immature. ** Yon borrids is ftig'' — those birds 
are fledged. 

"Ah, hinnies ! About us the lasses did loup 
Thick as curns in a spice singin htnnie ; 
Some aud, and some hardly /r^^'d ower the dowp." 

T. Thompson, d. 1816, Canny Netvcastle. 

FLIGHT, to set a-flying, to start in flight. " Aa'il flight ye 
pigeons for a shillin'." 

FLINCH, finch ; as huWftinch for bullfinch 

FLING, to kick ; applied to a horse. Fling also means to 
vomit, to throw ; to make a sarcastic or scornful comment on 
a person or thing. 

FLINT, the core of an animal's horn. Called also the gowk. 
The term is likewise applied to the hard excrescence formed 
on a cow's head where a horn has been knocked off". 

FLIPE, FLYPE, to flay, to strip, to skin, to take off the bark. 
** Aa flyped him," figuratively used, means, ** I robbed or 
stripped him." To turn half inside out, as a stocking is flipcd 
in order the more easily to put it on the foot. 

FLIPE, FLYPE, a thin piece, a piece of skin torn off. To 
take off in flypesy is to take off in thin pieces. A hdXflipc is 
the brim of a hat. 

FLIRE, FLYRE, FLEER, to laugh, to jeer. 

FLIRTIGIG, a forward, talkative, and unconstant girl. — 
HalliwcWs Diet. 

FLISK, to flip in one's face. " Dinna flisk yor hankersher 
about that way." " Flisk them flies off." Also to leap nimbly. 
" Heflishd off like a lop." 

ELITE, to scold, to make a great noise. — Hodgson MS. 

FLITIN, scolding. 

FLOAT-WHEY, curds made from whey, much used in 
Northumberland. — HalliwelVs Diet. Compare Flote. Milk 
squeezed from cheese-making. 

*' Flot-whey, those curds left in whey, which, when boiled. /oa/ on the 
top." — Jamieson. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 295 

FLOG, to work with a hammer and chisel. The work of 
chipping and surfacing iron is spoken of sls /logging. To flog 
is any rapid action in striking. 

FLOORS, flat lands lying at the foot of slopes. Floors and 
flats are of frequent occurrence in field-names. 

FLOTE, to flatten in i>\aiStenng.— Hodgson MS. To fate, to 
/leety to skim milk ; to take off the cream ; whence the word 
fleeting dish. 

FLOTHERY, slovenly, but attempting to be fine and showy. — 
Halliweirs Diet. «* He's fat an' flothevy:' 

FLOW, or FLOU, a peat moss, a peat bog, generally large 
and straggling. Flow in place-names occurs, as in Manside 
Flow, in Northumberland ; probably from its being on the 
watershed. 

"The rider dreading every instant that he will sink overhead into the 
flow, crawls out on his hands and knees. — S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumber- 
land, 1835, p. 164. 

" Between the hills are broad and fiat morasses, called flow mosses." — 
Hodgson, Northumberland, pt. ij., vol. i., p. 84. 

'• The bog overflows along the outlet or outlets, and that part of it 
which thus dips away from the bog proper is aptly called the flow of the 
bog/* — Professor Lebour, Geology of Northumberland and Durham, second 
edition, 1886, p. 11. 

FLOW, FLOU, gusty. " It's a pw day." ** What a flow 
neet!" 

FLOWERY-DOCKEN, the Chenopodium bonus Henricus. 

FLOWS, FLOUS, floats, applied to the cluster of corks which 
support the " bosom " of a salmon net. ' 

FLOWTER'D, affrighted.--/?fl/s Gloss., 1691. 

FLUCKER, or FLUKE, or FLATTY, a flounder. See 
Fleucker. 

FLUFF, a sudden ignition. ** A fluff of poother." The down 
from the wool of cloth. See Fuff. 

FLUFTER, FLUFFER, to disconcert, to fluster. 

FLUKE, the flounder, Platcssa flcsus^ Flem. See Fleuckef, 
Flucker. 



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296 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FLUM, deceit, misleading talk. " Let's he* nyen o' yor flum^ 
noc' 

FLUMMIX, to suprise, to overwhelm with astonishment. In 
argument the person who has the best of it says, ** Aa 
flummix'd him. 

FLUTHER, a flutter, a state of mental agitation. " It put 
us aal iv 3l fluther.'* 

FLUTHERY, slovenly, in a state of bustle or confusion. Sec 
Flothery. 

FLY, sly, crafty, smart. " He's a fly chep." " Aa see the 
gam — but yor not fly.** 

FLY-DOOR, or SWING DOOR, a door so constructed as 
always to fall close when left alone, but to open either towards 
or from the current of air, according to the direction of the 
force exerted against it. — Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, i888. 

FLY-DROVEN, fly-blown. Applied to meat on which tlie 
eggs of the blow-fly have been deposited. 

FLYING-BENT, the Molinia coerulea. See Bent. 

FLYING-CRADLE, a framing of about four feet by one and 
a half feet, upon which one or more men may sit astride to do 
temporary work in the shaft. — Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, 1888. 

FO [W.-T.] , to fall. The as in snow. 

FOAL, FOALEY. 

""Where a youth is too weak io put the tram by himself, he engages a 
junior assistant, who is called the foal, and in this case the strongest pulls 
the tram by a short rope called a soam, while the foal pushes bSiind." — 
S. Oliver, Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. 41. 

The position of heedsman and foaleys appears to have been 
sometimes reversed ; for, whilst the description above given 
coincides with the note on the subject in The Pitman's Pay^ an 
experienced writer puts 

•• The strongest one behind and the foaley in front."— Mr. J. Rowell. 
NcMcastle Weekly Chronicle, April 14, 1888, article *'Soam." 

In the same paper, Mr. G. Halliwell, Seaham Harbour, 
corroborates the latter statement. See Heedsman. 



FOALEY-MEAR, a mare with young. 
FOALS-FOOT, coltsfoot, Tussilago farfara. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 297 

FOG, the clover, or second crop, that follows a hay crop. 
*^Fogs to let" is the common heading of advertisements 
where the eatage of autumn pasture is to be let. Also 
moss or lichen growth. When mosses are in excess the 
pasture is said to be full ot fog. 

FOIL, scent or track. " The hoonds hes lost the foil" The 
foiling, among hunters, is the mark, barely visible, where deer 
have passed over grass. — Todd. 

FOLK'S GLOVE, the foxglove. 

^ FOLLOWING-IN, the action of one man working after 
another in the same, working place. 

FOLLOWING-STONE, loose stone lying on coal, which 
comes down as the seam is worked. Called also ramble. 

FOLLOW-TAR, a game at marbles played by two boys, who 
shoot alternately, one following after the other. 

FOLLY, any ridiculous building. At Byker an imitation of a 
ruined castle occupied the site of the new church, and it was 
always known as Byker Folljf. Anderson's Folly was the 
name given to a mansion at Elswick, in which the builder 
carried out many original conceits. 

" Mr. Cuthbert Dykes and others, in 1693, agreed with the Corporation 
to erect a water engine, for supplying the town with river water, without 
Sandgate. This building was afterwards called ' the Folly.' ' ' — Mackenzie, 
History 0/ Newcastle, p. 724. 

The site of this is still known as the Folly Wharf on the 
Quayside. 

FOND, soft, silly, half-witted, insane. In West Tyne and in 
East Cumberland the word is font, the t being most emphatic. 

FONDY, a fool. ** Sit doon, ye greet fondy.*' 

FOOL-GOWK, an April fool. See April-gowk. 

FOOL-PLOUGH. See Full-plough. 

FOONDER, FOUNDER, to break down, to go lame. A 
horse is said to have foondend when it has become lame or 
useless. 

FOOR, or FURE, a furrow which a plough makes in going up 
and down to form a rig. This is not an abbreviation of 
furrow J but the original word. Foorlang, a furrow long ; hence 
a furlong. See Rig-and-rean. 



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298 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FOOR-HORSE, the far horse, or right side horse of a pair in 
ploughing. The horse on the left is the ** land," or ** nar-side 
horse." 

FOOT, the lower part of a street, as " head " is the upper part, 
"Head of the Side" and ''Foot of the Side" are still 
constantly used in Newcastle. 

FOOTAGE-MONEY, the foy, or fee, received by a pilot. 
The footage-monies received by pilots are called by them " foys." 

FOOT-AN*-A-HALF, a game like leap-frog. The last leaper 
must call out '' foot-an'-a-half,^' If he fails he must become 
the ** back." After each round the " back " steps on to the spot 
where the last leaper touched, and the " frogs " who follow 
must in the second round leap from the original mark and 
clear the back. The move forward is repeated after every 
round till the players fail in turn. 

FOOT-COCK, a small hay-cock, of less size than a l^le, used 
in showery weather. It is a small heap of hay gathered off 
the ground and cocked lightly up with the foot and rake to 
assist drying. See Hay-making. 

FOOTH, plenty. See Fouth. 

FOOT- WASH IN. On the evening preceding the wedding day 
the feet of the bridegroom were washed in a company of two 
or three of his own particular friends. A similar office was 
also performed to the bride, but in a more private way. — 
Richardson's Table Book, Legendary , vol. i., p. 342. 

FOOTY, small, mean, insignificant, low, shabby. " He*s a bit 
footy body.'* But when applied to a girl it means a small, 
neat person. 

FOOT- YELL, the drink customary on the '< footin," or beginning 
of a new work. When a young horse gets his first shoes, it 
is customary for the smith and the owner to drink the foot-yell. 
This is the " footin." 

FOOZ, or FUETS, the common house leek, Sempervivum 

tectorum. 

FOR, until. " Wait for aa come." 

FOR, joined to what =vfhy ? As " What for will he not ? " 

FORAN, a person beforehand. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 2^9 

FOR-A'-SYKES, a common exclamation. Probably " for all 
our sakes.*' ** For-a^-sykes drop it. 

FOR-BECAAS. ** What for-hecaas .^''— what for ? 

FORBY, besides, over and above. 

*• To whom pigs and pullets are sent — and other good things /oriy." — 
Address to Mr. Peter Watson ^ 1824. 

" He's sixteen stane onyway, forebye the heavy side-saddle.'* — James 
Armstrong, Wanny Blossoms, 1879, p. 122. 

FORCED-FIRE. See Need-fire. 

FORCE-PUT, a thing done of necessity or under compulsion. 
** We'll not dee'd except as ^ force-put.^' '*A force-pufs ne 
plisure ** — a thing done of necessity is no pleasure. 

FORDER, to further. 

FORE, the front. '*Fore door *'— the front door. " Is he still to 
the fore ? " — is he still to the front — that is, still alive and 
well? 

FORE-DAYS, FOOR-DAYS, towards evening.— Halliwell*s 
Diet. 

FOREIGNER, the name applied to any craftsman not 
belonging to the freelage of the town. Formerly the free 
burgesses of Newcastle-upon-Tyne were resolute in harassing 
and oppressing every foreigner , as they emphatically call all 
non-freemen. A foreigner was not allowed to keep a shop but 
by the sufferance of the corporation. 

FORELOCK, a washer or circular disc of iron for the nut of 
a bolt to press against when screwed up. 

FORENENST, FOREANENST, FORNENT, next in front, 
right in front, right against. 

FORE-SHIFT, the first shift of hewers that descends a pit for 
work. They go down two to three hours before the boys. 

FORE-WON, in a pit, " a wall driven over before the board 
was holed.'* — Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms, 

FOR-FAIRS, or FOR-FAIR, in earnest. See Fair. 

•• Whene'er we saw his sonsy face, wor steam got up for-fair."-^ 
R. Emery, 1853, Deeth o' Bobby Nunn. 



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300 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FORGIMMETY, and FORGIMMETY-ME-SINS, an excla- 
mation of surprise. 

FORKY-TAIL, the earwig. Called also codgyhell, twitchbell, and 
scotchyhelL 

FORPET, or FOR-PIT, a measure containing— 

'* At Alnwick the fourth part of a peck, about three quarts. At Hexham, 
four quarts. | peck of wheat, 1-5 of barley and oats. At VVooler. 4 quarts, 
} peck, 1-9 bushel. The word seems to be a corruption oi fourth-part." — 
James Britten, Old Country and Farming Words. (E.D.S.) 

FORRAT, FORRIT, FORRAD, forward, bending forward, 
and, thus, weakened. ** Getten sq\x forrit i' the knees " — that 
is, bending very much with age. 

FORRATSOME, FORRETSOME, of a forward disposition, 
impudent. 

FORSMAN, foreman. 

" She smacked iheforsman on the face." 

J. P. Robson, Hadlick, pt. ii. 

FORTHERLY, forward, early, " A fortherly harvest.*' 
" Fortherly potatoes." — Brockett. 

FORTHY, industrious, well doing, free, kindly spoken. " A 
forthy body.'' 

FORTYFOALS, a blue and white potato of good increase. 
Most likely originally coWe^ forty-folds,*' 

FORWH Y, wherefore. ** He comes here ; forwhy aa*s sure aa 
canna tell." 

FOTHER, FODDER, of coals, one-third of a chaldron ; about 
as many coals as a one-horse cart will contain. A fothsr of 
lead = 21 cwts. The word has come to be applied to a cart- 
load of anything in general." " A fother of muck, or of lime, 
&c." The fother differs from the load^ the latter being as 
much as can be carried on the hack of a pack-horse. 

" A fother [of coals] is properly as much as can htt conveyed in a cart 
with one horse." — T. John Taylor, Archeology of the Coal Trade, 1852. 

*• Fother, a measure of coals — six bushels." — Hugh Miller, Geology of 
Otterburn and Elsdon. 

FOTHER, to feed horses and cattle, to give them their fodder. 
To "do up'* horses or cows for the night. ^'He ye fathered 
the beass yit ? '* 

FOTHER-BARN, a straw barn. 

FOTHERIN, the last feeding at night for horses and cattle. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 3OJ 

FOUL, impure and inferior, as coal that is mixed with slaty 
materials, or is soft and sooty and not fit for use. 

FOULNESS, explosive mine gas. 

FOUMART, FOOMART, the polecat, Mmtella putorius. 
The stoat is sometimes called polecat, or pow-cat, but the 
animal is almost extinct in South Northumberland. Fountart, 
at Hexham, means the stoat or marten, not the polecat, 
which is a much larger animal of the same species, extinct 
in Northumberland. 

FOUSTED, FUSTED, gone mouldy, spoiled. 

FOUT, a dear, fond, affectionate child.— ii/(?^^5^» MS. The 
word has been wrongly defined as meaning, when applied 
to a person, lazy, untidy, dirty, or spoiled, like a spoiled 
child. It is really applied as a pet term to a romping, giddy, 
lively girl. See Fouter. 

FOUTER, a foumart, a term of contempt, ** Ye stinkin fouter" 

FOUTH, FOOTH, plenty, fill. 

FOUTHLESS, empty, useless. "He's nobbut a peer fouthless 
body." 

FOWER-BANWIN, four shearers on one rig. See Bandwin. 

FOWERSOME, four persons; like twosojue for two persons, 
and threesome for three together. 

FOWIN, folding and foddering cattle. See Faain. 

FOWT, fought, p.t. of Jight. Fit is often used as the pJ. of 
fight— p, p. fouten. ** Hoo lang is't sin Sayexs fit Heenan ?" 

FOX-FOOT, the grass Dactylis gtomerata. 

FOX'S-CLAWS, FOX'S-TAIL, the club moss, Lycopodium 
clavatuntj L. It is also known as stag-horn nioss and tod's tail. 
The spikes of it are called forks and knives, according as they 
are single, double, or triple. — Johnston's Botany of tJie Eastern 
Borders. 

FOX-TAIL-GRASS, the Alopecurus pratensis, L. 

FOY, a fee ; specially used formerly as a fee to a fitter's clerk ; 
also used for the money received for pilotage. The "footage" 
monies received by pilots are called by them foys. 



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302 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FOY-BOAT, a boat used by a /oy-boatman. 

FOY-BOATMAN, a boatman whose occupation is to watch at 
sea, off the mouth of the Tyne, for incoming ships, in order 
to obtain employment in mooring them on their arrival in the 
harbour. 

FOZY, applied to a turnip that is frost bitten ; and, hence, 
spongy. A fozy turnip is also one overgrown, deficient in sap, 
and of a dry, spongy nature inside. These, when handled, 
are very light and have a hollow sound. The youngsters on 
a farm sometimes use them for footballs. 

FRA, FRAE, FRE, FREV, FREN, from. "Where hes he 
come/m ? " This is the usual form in Northumberland. On 
Tyneside the sound is much shortened. 

*• FYa$ Team Gut to Whitley, wi' coals black and brown, 
For the Amphitrite loaded, the keel had com'd down." 

Robert Gilchrist, Skipper*s Erudition, 1824. 

Fre is the usage when the word following begins with a 
consonant ; but when a vowel, or a mute aspirate, follows, 
the forms are frev and fnn. See also Fren. 

" Can they de owse wi' Crowley's crew, 
Frev a needle tiv an anchor, O ? " 

FRAC, audacious, undutiful, bold, obstreperous. 

FRAISE, FRAKE, a disturbance, a fight. " A bonny frake 
they gat up amang them." [Heard at Harbottle.] These 
appear to be variants oifray. Compare Frasy and Fray. 

" The auld wives aften mak* ^f raise** 

Poems, F. Donaldson, Glanton, 1809, P- 77« 

FRAKE, a freak. 

FRAME, to attempt, to strive, to show promise of ability. " He 
frames well.'* ** How does he frame ? " 

FRAME, the head gear carrying the pulleys of a pit. 

FRAME-DAM, a strong separation of wood and clay, to stop 
water back. — Mining Gloss, Newcastle Terms, 1852. 

FRAME-DOOR, a pit door set in a frame of special construction. 

*' It only opens in one direction, namely, against the pressure of the 
current of the air, and should always be hung so as to fall to should any 
one passing through it neglect to draw it close."-— G/ow. 0/ Coal Trade 
Terms, 1888. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 303 

FRAMMELT, the bent portion of an obsolete form of cattle 
band, made of wood, to embrace and slide on the stake. The 
upright portion is called a ** byeakie." 

FRAMPISH, to bend tightly. 

FRAP, to strike, to rap. " Aa'U fvap yor heed when aa get a 
had on ye." 

FRASE, or PHRASE, a disturbance. " What are ye myekin 
the frast aboot ; thor's neebody kill'd." See Frasy. 

FRASS, fine dust. 

" A caterpillar mines between the bark and the wood, and throws out 
a brown dust or frass*' —Dr. James Hardy, Hist, of Bwks. Nat. Club, 
vol. 9, p. 371. 

FRASY, fray, excitement, hubbub. The same as fraise. See 
Frase and Fray. 

*' Hoping the/rasy might turn out a hoax." — ^James Armstrong, Wanny 
Blossoms, 1879, p. 132. 

FRASY, disturbing, talkative. "Hoot! he's no worth mindin* ; 
a poor frazy body." Probably the adjectival form of the 
foregoing word. 

FRATCH, to make a disturbance in a querulous, firetful way; 
also a slight quarrel, a disagreement, an obstruction. " He's 
niwor easy till he can raise a fratch wi' somebody." 

FRATCHER, a fault finder, a disturber about petty things. 

FRATED, frayed, fretted ; having rough, ragged edges, as torn 
or worn cloth. 

FRATISHED, perished, half frozen, benumbed with cold. — 
Brockett, See Fretished. 

FRATISHMENT, starvation from cold. 

FRAY, a great disturbance. A house cleaning or a washing 
day leads to the exclamation, ** What a fray thor's on thi 
day." 

FRAZE. See Erase. 

FREAK, FREYK, FREKE, a strong man, a fighting man. 
(Obs.) 

FRECKEN, to frighten. 

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304 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FREE-COAL, coal well jointed, and working freely. — Hugh 
Miller, Geology of Otterburn and Elsdotiy 1887. 

FREEDSTOLL, FRITHSTOLL, FRIDSTOLL, the seat 
of peace. Still preserved at Hexham. 

" A Stone Chair in the Church near the Altar, to which Offenders used 
to fly for Sanctuary. Anglo-Saxon, fridh, peace, and stoU, a seat." — 
Bailey's Diet. 

FREELEGE, FRELIDGE, the privilege of acquiring the 
freedom of the town. ** He took up his freelege from his 
father." " He served his freelege as a joiner." (Obs.) 

FREE-LEVEL, discharging at the surface without engine 
power. — Nicholson, Gloss, of Coal Trade Terms. 

FREEND, friend. Relatives are generally called freends. ** Aa's 
gan ti see ma freends,'' *' He's a far away freend o' mine." 
The word is frequently shortened to /m, or jrind, 

FREESE- ROOTER, possibly a name for a portcullis. (Obs.) 

FREET, fright ; FREETEN, to frighten. 

FRE-GITHER, apart. " They've been lang fre^gither.'' 

FREM, FREMD, FREMIT, strange. "Fm«i folk"— alien 
people. **Aa've hed mair kindness shown us he fretnd io\k 
nor fre me aan kin." Thus generally applied to distinguish 
people who are not one's blood relations. Hence anything 
out of the way or strange. ^^ Afremd day." 

''kfremd man this." — Hodgson MS. 

** Frem'd or fremt, far off, not related to, or strange, an enmity." — Ray^s 
Gloss., 1691. 

FREMANG, from among. 

FREN, from. **He's teyun'd fren him." This form is used 
instead oifre, in the same way thRtfrev is used. " Did ye get 
it fre Tom, or frev Anty ?" Here a vowel or consonant 
following determine the use oifre^frev^ or fren, ** He gat the 
teyun fren an aad fiddler." ** He played the teyun fre 
memory." 

FRENCH LENART, a redpole. 

FRESH-WOOD, the threshold, or foot-beam of the front door 
of a dwelling-house. — Hodgson MS. 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 305 

FRET, FREET, a wet fog. It is generally called a sea/ret 

FRETISHED, FRATISHED, starved with cold (as fam'shed 
is starved with hunger). Common in Northumberland. 

FRETISHIN, FRETISHMENT, an attack of cold. " Aa've 
getten a tarrible /f^^MW« ; aa*ve neezed (sneezed) a' night." 
" He gat a real fretiskment" 

FRETTEN, or FRITTEN (the p.p. of fret), worn or eaten 
away ; fretted into marks or scars, as pock-frettenf marked with 
the small-pox. 

FREV, from, before a vowel. See Fren and Fra. 

FRIEZY, made of frieze. A friesy coat is made of a kind of 
rough home-spun yarn, and has a woolly or hairy appearance. 

FRIM, vigorous, thriving, well fed. 

FRITH, a clearing in a forest. This term appears to be 
equivalent to the Cumberland thwaiU. In Northumberland 
the word frith occurs as a place-name in one example only. A 
variant form of the same word probably occurs in Gosforth. 

FRIZZLE, in flint and steel guns the piece of iron acted on 
by the flint to produce the explosion. Also the piece of steel 
used for striking fire upon a flake of flint, often carried yet by 
old men to get a light with when in the fields. A piece of 
"matchy," or brown paper steeped in a solution of saltpetre, 
then dried, is used to take ** had " from the spark obtained by 
striking the frizzle against the sharp edge of the flint. The 
frayed edge of the ** matchy " projects well to the face of the 
flint in the operation. 

FROG, a disease in the throat of infants. •* Frog o' the mooth." 

FROST, in Northumberland is the name of dew, or the rime of 
hoar frost. The dew condensed on the glass of windows is 
also called frost. Also a fine September night which covers 
the grass with dew is called a frosty night. — Hodgson MS. 

FROST-RIND, or FROST-RY-END, frost-rime, hoar-frost. 

FROTH, FROUGH, weak, foamy. Applied to wood, it means 
light and brittle, as the crack willow. Light, like froth. — 
Hodgson MS. 

FROWDY, a slovenly or slatternly woman. 



T 



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306 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FRUGGAN, a curved iron scraper with which ashes in an oven 
are stirred. — HalliweWs Diet, 

FRUSH, the thrush, or tender part of a horse's foot. 

FRUSH, brittle. " It's vsLtryfrush" (said by a mason hammering 
a quarl which broke easily, 1887). Anything full of sap and 
easily broken is said to be frush. 

FRY, children. 

" The skulls are shat ; the gabblin /ry 
A' skelp aboot at pleasure." 

The OUin' 0' DUky's Wig, 1826. 
" And them before the^ of children yong 
Their wanton sportes and childish mirth did play." 

Faerie Queene, I., xii., v. 7. 

FU, FUH, full; generally shortened in this way when at the 
end of a word. Hoosefuh — hoxxsefull ; nieifuh — hand/«//, &c. 

FUD, the tail, or " scut," of the hare, rabbit, &c. 

FUDDLING, a practice in fish poaching. 

" They not onl^ use a net when thev have one, but resort to the more 
destructive practice of what they caMfuddling the fish, by liming the water. 
or throwing into the pools a preparation of Coculus Indicus."— S. Oliver. 
Rambles in Northumberland, 1835, p. 83. 

FUE, or FEW, to endeavour, to struggle. *' Aa'U fue to di'd." 
" He fues well at the job." See Few. 

FUE, an effort. " He myed the best fite on't aa've seen." 

FUETS, the house-leek. See Fooz. 

FUFF, to puff out with an explosive or hissing sound. 
" The pooiherfuffed off iv a jiffy." 

FUGIE, FUGEE. (Obs.) 

'* The fugies, that is to sa]^, such cowardly cocks as tried to run and 
avoid fighting." — W. Brockie, Legends and Superstitions, pp. iii and 133. 

FUIL, a fool. See Feyul. 

FULL, rich, well-to-do. (Obs.) 

FULL, FULLEN, the house-leek, Sempcrvivtim tectorum. See 
FuETs, Fooz. 

"Country people plant the house-leek, or sen-green, locally termed 
full or fullen, on the thatched roofs of their cottages, in order to preserve 
them from thunder and lightning, which, it is said, will never strike this 
evergreen herb." — Legends and Superstitions ^ p. 117, 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 307 

FULLOCK, to jerk or advance the hand beyond the "past,'* 
or boundary line, in playing at marbles. It is a form of 
cheating at the game. " l^ee fullockin, noo," is the common 
expostulation to an unfair player. 

FULL-PLOUGH, or FOOL-PLOUGH. Anciently the 
hinds and agricultural labourers of Northumberland used 
to celebrate the termination of the labours of the plough 
by a pageant, which is variously called the white-plough^ 
stot'plough, full-ploughj and fool-plough or fond-plough. The men 
who joined were dressed in white shirts (without coat or 
waistcoat), on which were stitched a profusion of coloured 
ribbons and rosettes. They yoked themselves to a plough, 
and went round the country-side preceded by a flag-bearer 
and accompanied by a man with a gun. At each house a fee 
was demanded, and when a gift was obtained the gun was 
fired. A refusal of the customary largess was followed by 
the plough being drawn in many furrows through the ground 
or pavement in front of the house. Compare Sword-dancers 
and GuizARD. (Obs.) 

FUME, lead smoke. 

'* A sort of bad foul air, or fume, exhaling out of some minerals." — 
Compleat Collier, 1708, p. 23. 

FUMMLE, to fumble, to do a thing clumsily. " What are ye 
fumfnelin on that way for ?" To seek for in a fumbling 
manner. ** Aa fummeled on till aa fand it." In the dialect 
the b sound in tumbk, grumble, humble, nimble, thimble, tremble, 
&c., is always elided. 

FUN, FUND, FUNDEl^, preterites and/./, otfiiid. 

FUNERAL-CUSTOMS. See Bidders, Lake-wake, Streek. 

FUNK, to kick, to kick up the heels as a horse or donkey does. 
" To funk oflF" is to throw the rider. ** To be in a funk " is to 
be in a tift or passion about anything. " The gaffer's in a 
fine funk " — in a great passion. 

FUNK, to raise a noisome smell, as is done by blowing 
pungent smoke through a keyhole— that is, ^^ Funhin the 
Cobbler." 

FUNKER, a hollow cabbage stalk or a horn filled with lighted 
tow, out of which volumes of smoke are blown by way of 
amusement or mischief. 



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3o8 NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 

FUR, or POOR, a furrow. 

FUR, FURRIN, the deposit of lime from limestone water. 
A pipe when choked with deposited matter is said to be 
furred up. 

FURNACE-DRIFT, a passage leading into an "upcast" pit 
provided with a furnace for the purpose of ventilating the 
mine. Where two such passages exist, one only of which 
has the furnace burning, they are distinguished as the furnau- 
drift and dumb-drift. 

FURTHERANCE, extra price paid to the hewers when 
required to put the coals (Mining Gloss. Newcastle Terms, 1852), 
or as an allowance in respect of inferior coal, a bad roof, a 
fault, &c. (Gresle/s Gloss.y 1883). 

FURTIG, fatigue. 

FUSHENLESS, FUZZENLESS, dry, wanting in nourish- 
ment. 

** Fuxzen means 'nourishment, natural juyce, strength, plenty, abun- 
dance, and riches." — J. Britten, OldCountry and Farming Words. (E.D.S.) 

" Nature should bring forth 
Of its own kind, all/ouan, ail abundance." 

Tempest, act ii., sc. i. 

Fushenless is, therefore, sapless, sackless, useless. "He's a 
poor, fuslunless body." 

FUSOME, FEUSOME, deft-handed, but generally in a 
sinister manner. 

FUTCHEN, fur, probably of the fitchet, polecat, or stoat. 
(Obs.) 

•' A black futchen doublet, lined with sarsnet." — ^Will of John Lawson, 
1578.— R. Welford, History of Newcastle in XVI. Century, p. 508. 

FWOAK, folks, people. See Folk. 

" Jenny, the gardner, an sum mare sic leyke/twa^."— Thomas Bewick. 
The Howdy, ed. 1850, p. 11. 

FWOAL, a foal. A covft-fwoal is a young male horse whilst 
sucking. A dWy- fwoal is a female of the same age. A faaly 
mear is a mare and foal. 

F YE, an exclamation calling to attention. " Fye for a guide to 
Durham ! '* exclaimed the broken fugitives after the battle of 
Newburn, in August, 1640. The word also occurs in early 



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NORTHUMBERLAND WORDS. 309 

times. "Fye-losLU ! *' is a call to cows to be milked. "Fy^- 
nout ! ** is the cry of the herd to his dog as he sends him away 
after straying cattle, and ** Fye-yaiud ! " when he is sent after 
sheep. "Fj'tf-lake I *' or **Fy«-laig ! '* is the call when driving 
a fiock of geese. Fye ! is also used in urging a horse. In all 
cases the word is a cry of alarm, or a call to exertion or to be 
on the alert. 

FYES, the face. See Fe-yace. 

FYSEABLE, faceable ; something not to be ashamed of; any 
bit of work well done. 

FYES-STRAP, a strap suspended from the " heed " of a horse's 
bridle, hanging down the face just above the " nosepike,*' and 
generally ornamented with brass. 

FYKE, to fuss, to worry at trifles. See Feak and Fidge. 

FYLETT, probably a baptismal fee. (Obs.) 

The will of Robert Clayton, proved Jan. 19th, 1579, leaves to " Elinor, 
daughter of William Selby, whom he christened, 20s. and a fylett.^* — 
Richard Welford, History of NewcastU in XVI. Century, p. 511. 

" Fofhtt baptism; Folut, baptised; Folut in a font stone." — Anturs 0/ 
Arthur, p. 9. — HalliweWs Diet, 

FYUL [T.], a fool. See Feyul. 



END OF VOL. I. 



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THE MARKET STREET PRESS WORKS. MANCHESTER. 



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